Friday, July 9, 2010

Banana Bread Cockaigne

I'm telling you I'm behind. I wish I could be more on top of posts when certain holidays come around so I am able to share with you what I'm doing for that occasion, instead of posting it weeks later. Like Father's Day. Already happened a few weeks ago and I'm just now able to share a recipe with you. This is something I must work on! With most holidays I find it best to just bake something. Especially for my father. He is a simple man and not hard to please. He really doesn't care much of holidays, and if we just go out for a family dinner he is happy with that! I find baking something is always a fun way to celebrate. My dad loves banana bread, and I noticed I had way too many frozen bananas in my freezer. Father's Day came just in time because I was due to make a banana bread. I don't have a go to recipe for banana bread. I always like to try something new and different. That is where the Joy of Cooking cookbook comes in handy, Banana Bread Cockaigne.

First of all, I had to Google what cockaigne was all about, and this is what I found. Fancy huh? This was a very very delicious banana bread. It was light on the butter, and just enough sugar to not be over the top. It was very moist. The addition of the lemon zest really brought the bread to life. I added the dried apricots and no nuts (he has an allergy to them). All the flavors really went well together. This bread is sophisticated and definitely meant for a maturer palate.

Banana Bread Cockaigne (From Joy of Cooking)  
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup sugar
6 tbsp or 3/4 stick unsalted butter, softened OR 1/3 cup vegetable shortening
3/4 tsp grated lemon zest
1-2 large eggs, beaten
1 to 1 1/4 cups mashed ripe banana (2-3)
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1/4 cup finely chopped dried apricots (optional)

Have all ingredients at room temperature. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan (I used 3 mini loaf pans). Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat in a large bowl at medium speed until creamy sugar, butter, and lemon zest. Beat in eggs and mashed banana. Add the dry ingredients in about 3 parts, beating until smooth after each addition. Fold in nuts and/or dried apricots. Scrape the batter into the greased pan(s). Bake the bread about 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly, then unmold. Cool completely before slicing.

Gorgeous apricot specks.

PS: Head on over to FANNETastic Food for an awesome Barney Butter giveaway!


Shelby said...

Fallon you do a great job! The bread looks awesome. :)

Diana's Cocina said...

Lovely bread, love the apricot specks!

Pam said...

Adding lemon zest and apricots is a great idea. Looks delicious.

Sook said...

I love banana bread. Yours looks so pretty. :)