This Shiv is bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S: Banana bread.

I used to think it was a major character failing, our household’s utter inability to make it through an entire bunch of bananas without at least two of them collapsing under the weight of their own ripeness. It seemed so wasteful–until I clocked that my freezer was good for more than just vodka and ice cream, and could be used to store the ailing bananas until such time as I could find a different, nefarious purpose for them. With this realization, I started a frozen banana collection so prodigious that, eventually, Bench had to stage an intervention.


“Hey Shiv? You know that the freezer is completely full of bananas, right? That we can’t fit anything else in there? And that they’re kind of scary-looking? And that we REALLY NEED TO START USING THEM UP?”

And so began the autumn of banana bread.

I’d never really tried my hand at this particular confection before; being contrary, I’d always been perfectly happy with my pumpkin bread. But, life is change (highness); and so I set about my new task with gusto. A major goal of this was to ensure the bread retained some sort of nutritional value and wasn’t too heavy, but was still delicious and decadent. And so I called on my old favorites (buttermilk and whole wheat flour) as well as a few new characters (sesame oil, vanilla bean) to produce what turned out to be the loveliest, chewiest, most delightful loaf of banana bread it’s been my privilege to encounter. Oh, sure. That doesn’t mean I’m going to stop tinkering–I have a deep desire to try it out with some chinese five-spice powder, or perhaps a bit of curry–but I think this one is going to become a staple.

Sometimes you get lucky, you know?


Banana (fanna fo fanna) Bread*

2 eggs
1/2c sugar
1/4c brown sugar
1+ cup mashed bananas (3-4 medium sized)
1/3 c buttermilk
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 Vanilla pod (or 1 tbsp vanilla)
1 c all-purpose flour
3/4 c whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
cinnamon and cloves to taste (i just kind of pour them in, but if i estimated i’d say 2 tsp cinnamon and 1 tsp cloves)
handful chocolate chips (remember–I said moderately healthy)

  1. Preheat the oven to 325. Oil and flour a loaf tin.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs and sugar until incorporated.
  3. Add the bananas, oil, buttermilk, vanilla and spices
  4. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet.
  6. Add the chocolate chips
  7. Turn out into your prepared loaf tin and bake for about 1 hour, or until a skewer poked into the loaf comes out clean.

*I was not kidding, dear friend, when I said I would reach through the internet and throttle you for putting that in my head. Kisses!

In autumn, baking

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