Sunday, April 17, 2011

Not Your Momma's Banana Bread

I have good news and I have bad news.  The good news is that I have just re-learned a valuable lesson.  That lesson is to always double check the cards for my camera before I format them.  And it probably wouldn't hurt to refrain from downloading pictures on a wine night.

The bad news is that I had plenty of pictures for this blog that somehow never got themselves downloaded and have vanished into a digital picture abyss never to be seen again.  The only ones I have are the test pictures that I took in the beginning to check the lighting in the kitchen.  This is where I  work on downgrading my type 'A' personality to at least an 'A-' and fight the urge right now to run to the grocery store to get a couple of avocados to reenact this entire process.

The "but I'm tired and I don't wanna go to WalMart" side of me has just won the fight in my head.  In light of the fact that these pictures are not up to my usual high standards, there are a couple of things to remember.  1) I do not use quick-set epoxy in any of my recipes and B) my mise en place has not improved.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled blog.

I bought a couple of avocados last Saturday.  I took some pictures of them and then left them in the fruit bowl on the kitchen table.

On Wednesday, I remembered I had avocados fermenting in the fruit bowl on the kitchen table.

Avocado's don't keep that long y'all.

A few weeks ago, I had come across a baking / cooking website called 'Joy the Baker'.    I was looking for some different things to make while Deb was here and while pursuing Joy's recipes, I came across Avocado Pound Cake.

Hmmm.  Interesting.  There must be a reason that I now happen to have two almost-past-their-prime avocados in my possession.  No time like the present to make Avocado Pound Cake.

I started off by beating the living daylights out of the butter.  No need to soften it, just beat it on medium speed until it is soft.  You may have to use high speed, though, just to make the butter know that you are in charge.

Add the sugar and beat it about four minutes.  While this is all mixing, scoop out the avocado.  The recipe says to mash it, but you really don't need to.  The mixer will mash it all up just fine.

Here is where I would have taken a picture of the avocado scooping out process.  Since past their prime avocados do not look the greatest, I passed on the photo-opp.

Not that it would have made any difference at this point, I don't have any of my play-by-play pictures.

Anyway ~

Gently crack the eggs, add them one at a time, beating for one full minute before adding the next one.  I added the vanilla with the last egg.  Key word for the egg is gently.  I got a little rambuncious with the last egg and smashed it on the counter.  Rendered it unusable.

The batter whips up so nice and fluffy.  Seriously, I was hoping for more of a green tinge to it, but no such luck.  I actually thought it smelled a bit like banana bread.  Then I realized that I had a couple of bunches of ripe bananas that I needed to freeze sitting right near the mixer.

Yes, I freeze bananas.  I ripen them and then freeze them whole and use in smoothies instead of ice cubes.  I used to cut them up into chunks, but found out that a whole, frozen banana isn't that hard to break into pieces by hand.  I would never try to use frozen bananas in baking, as they turn into a mushy mess when thawed.  

Here is today's helpful hint - peel the banana from the bottom, not the stem end.  In my opinion, which I hold in very high regard, I think that there fewer strings to deal with.

Anyway ~

Pour the batter into two greased loaf pans and bake for about forty-five minutes.  I test-tasted it while it was still warm enough to spread a bit of butter on it.

Delicious.  Nice and moist.  Cornmeal (the secret ingredient) makes it have a bit of a unusual crunch.

Here is the link to Joy the Baker's website.

You can find the Avocado Pound Cake recipe by using the search function on her home page.  Or, you can do what I did ...

Grab a cup of coffee, click on her link 'recipe index' at the top of the page, sit back, browse and drool.

Have the BEST day ever!
~ Dorothy

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