Banana Bread

I have been using this tried and true recipe from Yankee Magazine for years!

It is simple, very versatile, and uses only a few ingredients you most likely already have on hand.

Make it your own with the addition of nuts, cranberries and spices that you can turn into a special loaf for all your holiday gatherings!

3 bananas – very ripe
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp basking soda
1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup chopped nuts of your choice, but walnuts work really well
1/2 cup fresh (cooked with a tsp of sugar and 2 tblsp water for ten minutes) or dried cranberries (soaked for ten minutes)
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1 tsp cinnamon, nutmeg or ginger (or all three!)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and grease a 9″ x 5″ baking pan. I use glass, but metal is fine.

Mash the bananas and whisk to a liquidy substance.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until combined, then add the eggs.

In another bowl, whisk together the remaining dry ingredients. Fold into the creamed mixture until almost combined. It will seem dry. Add bananas and any remaining options last, gently folding into the mixture several more times until evenly combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake low and slow (anywhere from 40-90 minutes) until a skewer or toothpick comes out clean.

Let cool, but it is really nice served warm.