18 December 2010

Pear & Banana Nut Bread


Dear Bananas,
I don't like you.  I can smell you (and thus, be disgusted by you) from miles away.  Why are you so smelly?  Why are you mushy?  Why can't you be better at being fruit?  No... I don't like you at all, bananas.

Before I continue, let me assure you that this is actually a very good recipe, and I ate and enjoyed the results. Yummy.  I just wasn't expecting the yummy-ness.

I bet there are people out there who like bananas, love pears, and can't imagine life without peanuts.  To them, this bread must seem almost magical.  I am not one of those people.  I don't like any of those things.  I've already expressed how I feel about bananas.  Pears are less bad than bananas, but I really only like them when poached.  Peanut butter is good.  Regular peanuts?  No, thanks.  Why did I make this bread again?

Oh, yes.  I was about to leave town for a while, and found myself needing to use up a whole bunch of fruits and vegetables, lest they spoil while I was away.  I kind of threw this bread together without much of a thought, since if I had thought about it, I would have... well... not done it.  At least some of my least favourite foods got to hang out together.

Imagine my shock when it was actually tasty!  I ate it for breakfast.  Amazing and true.  I had it with some salted butter, and I bet a nice slather of cream cheese would be just the thing for this.


Pear & Banana Nut Bread
Loosely based on a banana bread recipe from Gourmet, found on Epicurious.

1 1/2 cups (180g) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 very ripe banana
1 very ripe pear, peeled, cored and chopped
2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 teaspoons vanilla
2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts


Preheat oven to 175°C (350°F). Butter and flour a loaf pan.

Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a medium bowl.

Beat together eggs and sugar in large bowl at medium-high speed until very thick and pale and mixture forms a ribbon when beater is lifted, about 10 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add oil in a slow stream, mixing, then mix in banana, pear (if your pear is very ripe the mixer should chop it up pretty well - if not, dice beforehand), buttermilk, and vanilla. Using a spoon instead of the mixer, fold in flour mixture and peanuts gently but thoroughly.

Pour into loaf pan and bake in middle of oven until golden brown and a wooden pick or skewer comes out clean, 1 to 1 1/4 hours.  Tent with foil once the top browns to avoid burning the top and edges.

Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then turn out onto rack. Turn right side up and cool completely.

Makes 1 loaf.

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