When readers Denise and Steve came into my store, they told me that they had been on a 30 mile bike ride that morning. My response was something along the lines of an aghast "on purpose?". But I quickly forgave them for their inherent sportiness, because guess what: they brought me banana bread. With big ol' chunks of chocolate. Even the vaguely healthy applesauce in its construction couldn't cancel out that decadence.
Well, Mr. Spy and I deemed this an ideal breakfast bread, and I eagerly set to recreating the magic in my own kitchen, this time made with butter, chunks of milk chocolate, and a mix of walnuts and pecans. I really don't have to tell you it was delicious, do I?
It's a very easy recipe to personalize and make your own; here's Denise's base recipe so you can choose your own adventure with it.
Oh, and by the way, here's the cute custom painting I did for Denise and Steve while we talked about our favorite pastries!
Dense, Delicious Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips
With serious thanks to Denise and Steve
- 1 1/2 c flour (I use whole wheat pastry flour, or you can do a mix of 3/4 c white flour and 3/4 c wheat flour)
- 1 tsp sea salt (kosher salt is okay too)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 c mashed banana (3-4 very ripe, Denise usually uses 4 for extra moist
- 1 c sugar (can reduce to 3/4 c, or 1/2 c)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 c melted, cooled butter (I use canola oil, or a heaping 1/3 c apple sauce to be really healthy! and do use a little extra apple sauce to keep bread moist)
- (optional) 2/3 c chopped nuts (I used a mix of pecans or walnuts)
- 2/3 c chocolate chips for banana chocolate chip bread (Denise lists this as optional--I vote necessary)
- Mix all of the above together in a big bowl. Don't overmix--just mix until incorporated.
- Bake at 325 degrees F for around an hour, check center with toothpick; if toothpick comes out clean, it's done.