Chef Tova's Gourmet Vegetarian

Location: Los Angeles, California, U.S. Outlying Islands

I am a graduate student in American Literature...

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sue Kaufman's Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

When I was in high school, I was friends with a couple of girls whose mom was an amazing cook. She had half a dozen Babcock peach trees, and every summer when they were in their full glory, Sue Kaufman's kitchen was filled with wonderful pies, crisps, and preserves made from the Babcock's. There were also loads of them to take home and enjoy fresh. If you haven't had Babcock's, then you are missing out on one of life's great joys. They are only in season for a few weeks of the year, and have a delicate, golden white, juicy, perfumy, and incredibly sweet meat. They will spoil you for yellow peaches (I won't go near them).

But Sue was also famous for her banana chocolate chip bread. I have kept the recipe throughout the years, as it is a sure-fire winner, but I have modified it slightly to make it healthier. I will include Sue's version, plus my modified version of the recipe. Beware: if you make this and no one else is around, you may not be able to stop eating.

1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2-3)
1 1/4 cup sugar
1/4 lb. butter
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1/2 cup nuts (I like pecans)
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
a small container sour cream
1 large package chocolate chips

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. Then add banana. Mix dry ingredients together. Alternate adding dry ingredients and sour cream. Fold in the nuts and chips, and bake in a bundt pan for one hour at 350.

To make this dairy free, you can substitute canola oil for the butter. I also use only 1 cup white flour (part regular, part pastry flour), and for the other cup I use some combination of whole wheat, spelt and kamut flours (dont' use more than 1/4 cup of kamut flour). This really improves the recipe. I also recommend using organic ingredients for better flavor and health. Enjoy!

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