Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Clueless Baker: Banana Bread

Okay, I know I said I was going to start on a yeast bread for the next recipe out of The Clueless Baker cookbook, but I had 5 bananas that were about to go into the garbage. So, to prevent waste, I made the banana bread recipe. I actually made two different versions of the bread. One following the cookbook EXACTLY and my own that had just a few tiny adjustments.

I made my own version first (I know, bad idea) with a few tweaks it came out fine:




Then, while that was cooling I made the exact recipe:





Both turned out well, but had subtle differences in flavor. With my version I added an extra banana to the mix and then followed the recipe exactly. Unfortunately this caused the outside of the bread to finish while the inside was still raw. Thanks to my mom though, I learned that you can put foil a top of the bread to slow the cooking process on the outside of the bread. For both breads,  I found the cooking time to be off. If I let either loaf to cook for the recommended hour the whole thing would have been burnt to a crisp! I found that if you bake the loaves for 40 minutes, put foil on them and then bake them for another 10 minutes the bread comes out perfectly.

Enough of the technical stuff, I want to talk about the difference in taste! My version had stronger banana flavor than the cookbooks version, but it turned out more dense as well. I didn't mind that so much though, I eat the banana bread for breakfast mostly and a denser bread is more filling. The cookbook's banana bread, while lighter had less of a banana flavor and more of a general sweet taste. The texture differed more than in just the weight of the bread too. The cookbook's bread had a slightly grainy texture, while my variation was a bit smoother and was significantly more moist. Amazing the difference one small banana makes isn't it?

Okay hopefully I won't get distracted again and next time I will have a yeast bread to share with you.

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