Whenever I bake this banana bread, my apartment smells like heaven for the next 3 days. I’m talking total blissful brown butter heaven.
Seriously when I put my stick of butter in that skillet and watch those little white flecks bronze to nutty perfection it’s like I’m in my happy place and I don’t ever want to get out. So naturally I like to sneak brown butter into my baking creations whenever I can.
Let’s just take a minute and do a shout out to flour. I mean this is literally where it all begins and my main man Flour (yes capitalized) is getting a real bad rep nowadays.
Yes gluten can be bad for some of us (the ones who have some gluten intolerance or sensitivity or even worse, celiac disease) but sometimes you have to remind yourself that flour isn’t the devil incarnate you might of thought it was. Like certain sugars and fats, it’s always good to take gluten in moderation and up your dose of fruits and vegetables. So it becomes that much special when you decide to treat yourself again. And this is my treat.
I have been taking a lot of cooking classes at Sur La Table because it’s just fun and it’s cheap and you end up meeting some pretty awesome ladies and spending the afternoon cracking jokes and just making a mess. And I guess cause it’s New York, your instructors are usually those hard-headed, go-getter, intimidating chefs who have commandeered the most notorious kitchens in the city. But then you realize that they are absolutely hilarious and just want to make a mess with you.
Anyways, to make a long story short (it’s too late, Linda) you get a discount at their store after you have attended a class and I was able to get some awesome loaf pans. (Now Linda, why is this so awesome, its just loaf pans). Well, they are MINI loaf pans and that means that your usual pound cake is transformed into four little mini pound cakes!! (Whatever rocks your boat, Linda).
After laughing hysterically throughout the class at inappropriate jokes by this 60-something-year-old spunky lady who was at our cooking station, I parted ways with my stomach still hurting and went home to my small little NYC apartment with my new mini loaf pans. And I thought what am I going to bake in these things?
Well, there’s this woman in my office that ALWAYS has mini banana breads and I am serious this is all she eats. She must be 4″10 and 80 pounds and even that mini banana bread looks too much for her little organs to handle. But either way I am always jealous, so that was what solved the mini loaf pan mystery. Thank you nice lady with the mini banana breads who smiles at me in the hallways.
Now, one could say that I overdid it with the streusel topping. Well maybe you have a point. But it seems like once you put streusel on something, you feel like it just didn’t have enough. So you put more, and maybe you will be satisfied a little longer until you feel the need to put more the next time. It is a vicious cycle.
Sorry for referring myself to the third person. I feel like when I writing these posts to be sent into the void that is the internet, it gets lonely.
Mini Banana Bread Loaves with Streusel Topping
Makes four 2-by-5¾ mini loaves
For the mini loaves:
1¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
¾ cup unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 medium ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup milk
For the streusel topping:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in cubes
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
To make the loaves:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter mini loaf pans and set aside. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and set aside.
Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Keep an eye on the butter and stir occasionally. Soon the butter will start to brown fairly quickly. Remove from heat when butter solids become an amber color and butter smells slightly nutty. Immediately pour hot butter into a small bowl, or the butter will burn. Make sure you get all the brown bits into the bowl as well cause that’s where all the flavor is!
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time and mix until combined then add in vanilla. Mix in the mashed bananas well, making sure their aren’t any big lumps. Add flour mixture in 2 batches, adding the milk in between.
Distribute the batter between the four mini loaves, about 4 scoops per pan.
To make the topping:
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and rub together with clean fingertips until crumbly. Sprinkle topping evenly over the loaves.
Bake loaves for 35 to 40 minutes until golden and crisp and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the loaves cool for 15 minutes before removing or if you’re like that, go right ahead and eat.