Posted by: gbdub | September 21, 2009

Why did the banana go out with the fig? … Banana Bread

banana bread

The banana went out with the fig because he couldn’t find a date. What’s long and yellow and always points north? A magnetic banana.

Lame jokes aside, banana bread is one of those near-perfect foods. Simple, sweet, and featuring the amazingly successful combination of banana and nut flavors. This version comes from an old family recipe. And by old family recipe, I mean someone else’s old family recipe out of the employee cookbook from my dad’s office. But we’ve been using it for years because it’s easy and excellent.

Before getting into the recipe, I’d like to introduce you to the newest member of my household: A shiny new 325-watt KitchenAid Artisan stand mixer in cobalt blue (thanks Mom and Dad!). This recipe was its maiden voyage. Does anyone out there have an appropriate  name for a stand mixer? Does anyone think I should seek psychiatric assistance for wanting to name a stand mixer?

new mixer

banana bread ingredients

Ingredients. Yes that’s shortening. No, it’s not any good for you. Deal with it.

banana mash

Mash your bananas until mostly smooth. Set aside.


Cream together your shortening and sugar.

banana batter

Mix in your remaining ingredients (except nuts) until just combined.


Stir in some chopped walnuts. Pecans or maybe macadamia nuts would also work, if you’re into that sort of thing. Or go nutless, you crazy rebel.

banana in pan

Pour the batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes (actually I always seem to need to cook it a few minutes extra).

banana bread done

When it’s done it will look like this. A toothpick inserted in the middle should come out mostly clean. Allow to cool in the pan for a few minutes, then run a knife along the side, pop out of the pan, and transfer to a rack or plate to cool. Serve warm with a little bit of butter (unless you’re counting calories, but really at that point you shouldn’t be reading this far into a recipe for a loaf of “bread” that contains a cup of sugar and half a cup of vegetable shortening).

Banana Bread


  1. 1 cup sugar
  2. 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  5. 2 cups flour
  6. 1 tsp. baking soda
  7. 1/2 tsp. salt
  8. 3/4 cups chopped walnuts (or pecans, or macadamia nuts), if desired

With an electric mixer, cream together shortening and sugar on medium speed until fully combined. Add eggs, bananas, flour, salt, and baking soda. Mix on low speed until just combined. Stir in nuts. Pour batter into a greased 8 or 9 inch loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for  45-50 minutes. When done, a toothpick inserted in the center should come out mostly clean. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove from pan to cool completely.

Makes 1 8-9 inch loaf.

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  1. Nice mixer. I love the color. Go Blue!

  2. Don’t worry Garrick, I’m working on naming mine, too. Also, I should have a post up by tonight.

  3. old blue.

  4. This makes great muffins, too! They take about 20 minutes at 350, and it makes about 15 muffins.

  5. that’s good enough for me! 🙂 It’s also rellay super easy to make, just like regular banana bread. I used apple sauce to cut down the amount of butter and it makes the cake, er, bread, dense and

  6. website

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