Indescribably delicious! I usually make banana bread by hand, so I was a touch skeptical about using the bread machine, but it came out dense and golden and smelled wonderful while baking. I began with the recipe Dee provided, then I added an extra banana, 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon, a splash of vanilla, and in lieu of nuts, a heaping tbsp. of poppy seeds. I also added 4 oz. of plain applesauce (one of those individual cups). I used a Breadman Rapid Deluxe machine, which does not allow you to stop and then bake. Instead, I used the 1 pound setting and the "fruit/nut bread" option. It takes about 3 hours and 15 minutes to produce the loaf, but it mixes and stops and mixes and stops: the actual baking part is about an hour long. The banana bread had a more cakelike than breadlike texture (due to the addition of the applesauce) and was very dense, but oh so good! I love the ease and convenience of this recipe and I will use it often. A word of caution: use a rubber spatula to scrape the corners during the mixing phase to integrate all of the flour (be careful of the machine's mixing paddle), or some of the dry ingredients may get stuck in the corners of the pan. Enjoy!
The key to great banana bread is… RIPE bananas!!! If you use bananas that are hard & yellow or even worse green, they will contain too much starch and not enough natural sugars. As bananas ripen, they convert this starch into sugar. According to Wikipedia, “The greener, less ripe bananas contain higher levels of starch and, consequently, have a “starchier” taste. On the other hand, yellow bananas taste sweeter due to higher sugar concentrations”. FYI – You will know if a banana is ripe when it is soft and shows small brown & black spots on the yellow exterior of the banana.
Add the eggs, butter & bananas into the bread pan and then add the other ingredients. Try to follow the order of the ingredients listed above so that liquid ingredients are placed in the bread pan first and the dry ingredients second. Be aware that the bread pan should be removed from the bread machine before you start to add any ingredients. This helps to avoid spilling any material inside the bread machine. The bread machine should always be unplugged when removing the bread pan.
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I have made this bread several times. The results have been great each time, and it taste just like a cake. I’ve received positive reviews about this bread from others. My only suggestion is to add the chips after the liquid ingredients, as they melted when I added them with the dry ingredients the first time I made this bread. The bread came out dark, but it was still good.
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