4 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground ginger
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar (light or dark), firmly packed
1 cup (2 sticks/226gm) unsalted butter, melted OR 1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fresh buttermilk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 large ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped (optional)
1). Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Spray two 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray, and if desired, line bottom of pans with parchment paper; spray parchment paper also.
2). In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and both of the sugars. Mix thoroughly; set aside.
3). In a medium size mixing bowl, mix together the melted butter (or oil, if using) the lightly beaten eggs, the buttermilk and the vanilla. Stir into the flour mixture, and mix until combined. Do NOT overmix. Fold in the mashed bananas, the applesauce and chopped nuts, if using.
4). Pour the batter into the two prepared loaf pans. Bake for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out dry. Transfer loaves to cooling rack and let cool in pans for 15 minutes, then invert loaves onto rack and let cool completely (about 1 hour).
These loaves keep quite well wraped tightly in plastic wrap for up to 5 days at room temperature or 3 months in the freezer. Loaves can also be wraped in plastic wrap and kept in the refrigerator, if needed.
Makes 2 (8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch) loaves.
Photograph taken by Diana Baker Woodall© 2004
Date: January 18, 2004