Sundays have always been one of my favorite days of the week. It’s the wind down before the busy week ahead and I love to take the day to get organized, cook a big meal and bake if I get the chance. It’s also a day for a long walk, hike, ski, or snowshoe with the dogs to explore our new surroundings. This week I did my baking early so all I had to do this Sunday was take a hike around the property with the dogs, enjoy the sunshine, relax, have a cup of tea and enjoy my book while devouring my newest baked good love, brown butter banana bread from the blog Joy the Baker. I mean, brown butter… you had me at butter.
The recipe is fairly straight forward, and the smells are divine. I didn’t have any buttermilk, but used the old trick of stirring some fresh lemon juice into the milk I did have, and voila’! I love substitutions like that… I never seem to have buttermilk when I need it. I also used brown sugar as I prefer it over white sugar in baking these types of breads. And I threw in some walnuts for good luck. This is definitely not as healthy as my whole wheat and honey recipe, but my oh my, I don’t think any one cares. Serve it up with a nice cup of rooibos chai tea and a chunk of manchego cheese and I’ll be yours forever. Aren’t Sundays grand?
Brown Butter Banana Bread (adapted from Joy the Baker)
makes 1 9×5-inch loaf
6 ounces unsalted butter (3/4 cup), melted and browned to just over 1/2 cup of butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 1/4 cup mashed banana (from about 3 medium bananas)
2 teaspoons molasses
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan and set aside.
Place butter in a saucepan and melt over low to medium heat. Butter will foam and crackle as it melts. When it no longer crackles, the butter will begin to brown. This is a delicate moment as you don’t want to burn the butter and that can happen quickly. Swirl the pan around as it browns, and as soon as it smells nutty, transfer to a heatproof bowl and place in freezer or fridge to cool.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, vanilla extract, and buttermilk. Whisk in the mashed bananas and molasses. When butter has cooled, whisk in the browned butter.
Fold the wet ingredients, all at once to the dry ingredients and add the walnuts. Do not over work the batter.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick or a skewer inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to rest in the pan for 15 minutes, before removing bread from pan and cooling it completely on a wire rack.