Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Nutella + Banana Bread = YUM
I don't have much of a sweet tooth. The sight or smell of rich, decadent chocolate does nothing for me. When I crave something on the sweeter side, it's usually lemon meringue or key lime pie. That being said, even I still have the urge now and again for something sweet. Banana bread is often my go-to baked good. What's not to love, right? A couple of years ago, I was looking for a way to jazz up some banana bread for a bake sale and I came across a jar of Nutella in my pantry. Voila - kitchen magic was born! If you've never tried Nutella, it's wonderful. Even I, who am not a huge fan of chocolate, can appreciate it. The chocolate taste is very subtle, and the hazelnut really shines. You can find it at your regular grocery store, right alongside the peanut butter and jelly.
Over the last year or so, the Nutella banana bread has become my most requested recipe! I love to make this bread because it's quick and you can easily add or omit ingredients as you like. The base recipe is very forgiving. If you don't like nuts, leave 'em out. No Nutella? No problem; throw in a handful of chocolate chips instead. This recipe would be great for kids to help with or for those who aren't really into baking (like myself). I can pretty much guarantee that you'll earn brownie points for taking it to work or over to a friend's house.
The basic recipe started out years ago on a half sheet of lined paper. I've made tweaks to it here and there, and I have to say, I think it's pratically perfect now! The ratio of dry to wet ingredients seems quite high, but don't worry. Just keep mixing. As you stir, the liquids will come out of the bananas and you'll end up with a thick batter. I hope you enjoy this recipe and have fun making it your own. I would love to hear any creative spins on it that you might come up with!
Nutella Banana Bread
3-4 very ripe bananas
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a loaf pan. Mash the bananas in a large bowl with a fork. Add everything but the Nutella and mix well. Spoon half of the batter into the loaf pan. Add 3-4 dollops of Nutella and swirl with a knife. Add the rest of the batter, top with more Nutella and swirl. Bake 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool and enjoy!