A Treasured Recipe

Oh, Grandma! You made the best banana bread!

Dear Readers, how many of you can testify to a similar statement?

Not only did my grandma’s banana bread have the perfect blend of flavor and texture, but she baked her loaves in repurposed vegetable tin cans—outside paper labels removed, of course. For her, those cans were very practical, cost-effective baking pans.

However, for this grandchild, Grandma’s baking receptacles weren’t just practical. They added unique beauty to perfectly cylindrical loaves. Fascinating!

The tin cans had originally been shaped with multiple narrow ridges and valleys located smack dab around the circumference of their “tummies.” When those ridge perforations were innocently baked into the loaves, the bread’s charming presentation was most appropriate for a festive grandma-granddaughter tea party! But in all practicality, a tea party was never held.

Dear Readers, don’t dismay over such a disappointment. For how could one ever boo-hoo over an absentee social event such as a tea party when every savory crumb of banana bread had been joyfully consumed before any tea cups could appear!

Grandma’s banana bread was indeed top notch!

Warm memories of it returned the other day when I discovered her recipe. With two large ripe bananas awaiting use in my food lab, it was the perfect time to reconnect with the memory of Grandma’s culinary skills.

Of course, Miss NiNi did the usual and embellished a tried-and-true recipe by adding a few “extras” to the recorded ingredients. Chocolate chips—mini style—multiplied a pizzazz of flavor and polka-dot color to the bread.

Pecan streusel topping imparted an addendum of flavor and texture to the recipe’s great foundation—certainly making it worthy of tea-party consideration, Dear Readers.

This recipe is truly deserving of examination. Not only will you find the finished product to be delicious, but it might just conjure up warm memories of your loved one. The only thing missing, Dear Readers, is the simply artistic ridge-and-valley design element that only Grandma’s recycled tin cans could produce.

Grandma’s Banana Bread—updated—Miss NiNi

Ingredients for Pecan Topping:

  • ½ c. Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 T. All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/8 t. Cinnamon
  • ½ c. Toasted Pecans, Chopped
  • 1 T. Melted Butter

Method for Topping:

  • Toast pecans by placing them on a baking pan and bake for about 8 minutes in a 350 degree F. oven. Combine all ingredients; mix well. Set aside.

Ingredients for Bread:

  • ½ t. Vinegar
  • 4 T. Milk
  • 1c. Granulated Sugar
  • ½ c. Butter, room temperature
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 c. Mashed Ripe Bananas
  • 1 t. Vanilla Extract
  • 2 c. All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ t. Salt
  • ½ t. Baking Soda
  • ¾ c. Mini Chocolate Chips

Method for Bread:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan by spraying bottom and sides with nonstick spray with flour.

Sour the milk by stirring together vinegar and milk. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Cream together sugar and butter; beat in eggs, mashed bananas, and vanilla. In separate bowl, whisk together flour, salt and baking soda. Add to banana mixture alternately with sour milk.

Fold in mini chocolate chips. Pour into prepared pan. Sprinkle prepared topping over bread.

Bake in 350 degree oven for about 60 minutes.

Miss NiNi