aunt dot’s banana bread

I have a bunch of recipes to share, but this one deserves its own post.

Overly ripe bananas were on super sale at Kroger last week, so I snatched up a few bunches and made two loaves of banana bread – one for breakfast the next day and one for the freezer. This is, hands down, the best banana bread I’ve eaten. It is flavorful, moist, sweet without feeling dessert-y, and dependable. It is a family recipe, but I got approval to share it here. You may use it on one condition: you must always refer to it as Aunt Dot’s Banana Bread. I realize that you don’t know Aunt Dot, but trust me – She was a dear lady, and if you were at her house she would soon feel like your great-great-aunt too. When we were kids Aunt Dot and Uncle Joe lived on the way to our grandparents’ house so we occasionally stopped by for a visit. They told good stories, gave us snacks, and were genuinely interested in our lives. It’s been a while, but I can vividly remember feeling welcomed and appreciated in their home. They have both passed away, but the banana bread lives on.

That’s one of the great things about cooking, right? I take out a recipe, and immediately I’m sitting in Aunt Dot’s living room…or shucking corn on Granny’s porch…or helping Grandmama set the table. I’m no gourmet chef, but I do enjoy cooking and remembering.

  • So, the recipe…
  • 1/2 C butter, softened
  • 1 C sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 T buttermilk
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 C mashed banana
  • 1 1/2 C flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • pinch salt
  • 3/4 to 1 C chopped nuts (optional, but just go ahead and add them – walnuts, preferably)

Preheat oven to 325. Combine softened butter and sugar. Stir in eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, and banana. Combine dry ingredients separately. Add nuts to dry ingredients. Mix dry into wet. Pour into greased loaf pan. Bake one hour. 

You should let it cool a little while for optimal slicing, but it is most delicious when slathered with butter and burning your fingers. Also, when I made it last week I used half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour (which I ground with my own grain mill – get one!). I noticed very little difference, and I’ll probably try it with all whole wheat next time.



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