Baking: Pan Solo Banana Bread

This adventure was the result of my thinking: ‘I really need to use up these overripe bananas…’ (which were left over from my random decision to make banana pancakes).

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The humorous part is that I simply didn’t have enough bananas to meet the recipe…I needed something closer to 5 of them, so then I had to go to the supermarket to find some extra-ripe bananas.  In America, the store would probably have gotten rid of gotten rid of bananas covered in brown spots, but in Japan, they stick a brightly-colored 50% off sticker on things reaching the end of their shelf life and advise you to use them immediately.  They do the same thing with, say, meat that should be used or frozen by tomorrow, and lunch boxes that have been sitting around for half a day.

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So I got my bag of ripe bananas on the cheap and returned home, feeling frugal and successful as I got to work on my banana bread.

I used this recipe on allrecipes.com, because I generally trust the site.  As I’d never made banana bread, and the ingredients were all readily available, I didn’t have to diverge at all (except to do everything in my own order…and kinda winged everything).

* Note before we start: Imperial and metric measurements are not exact conversions.  The bananas I was using would have required 5.5 bananas, not disinclined to waste, I just used 5 bananas and reduced everything else a bit, and the metric measurements reflect those changes, while the imperial measurements reflect the original recipe.

PART 1) Banana Goo

- About 1 stick of butter (100g)
- About 3/4 cup brown sugar (100g)
- About 5 bananas
- About 2 eggs

First peel your bananas and, using a potato masher, mash them up.  Set aside.

(I forgot to take a picture of mashed bananas, but you’ll probably survive, and you get a glimpse of them about two photos down anyway.)

Now, cream together butter and brown sugar with mixer.

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Mix in mashed bananas.

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[Oh, look, that's what mashed bananas look like]

Mix in eggs.

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Genius, right?  Doesn’t this look appetizing?  You can’t go wrong with fat, sugar, and raw egg when you mix in a little mashed banana.

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Part 2) Dry Ingredients

- 2 cup flour (230g)
- 1 tsp baking soda (4g)
- 1/4 tsp salt (1g)

Mix ye olde dry ingredients together in a bowl.
That was hard, wasn’t it?

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Part 3) Stir Parts 1 and 2 Together

Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients (aka banana goo).

Do not over-stir.  A whisk worked well for me.

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It should end up looking like this:

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Part 4) Bake

Pour the batter into, ideally, a greased and floured 9×5″ (23x13cm?)  bread loaf pan.

Sadly, I had no such thing.  So, instead, I poured my batter into the giant silicone Han Solo Frozen in Carbonite ice cube try that I happened to have laying around (thanks, dear).  I figured that was about the size and shape of a bread loaf pan, and everything tastes better when recreated as an iconic Star Wars image, right?

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Finally, throw the pan, whatever shape it may be, in the oven at about 350*F for 60-65 minutes…or I did 170*C for 70 minutes.

If you did indeed decide to make Pan Solo (yes, I’m very punny, aren’t I?), you’ll want to trim the rounded top off the loaf and serve it upside-down on a flat plate after it cools.  (I didn’t have a large, flat plate, so I used a cutting board covered in aluminum foil…do what ya gotta do.)

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Otherwise, simply cool and slice and serve.  Yummy, yummy!

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