High Altitude Banana Bread

We live at a high altitude.  When we were in Omaha, Nebraska, we lived at less than 1000 ft.  I had no idea why the directions on cake mixes listed something different if you lived over 3500 ft, as in, why would that matter?  Well, now we live at about 8500 ft, so definitely high, and now I also know altitude makes a difference when you bake.

The funniest thing that ever happened was when I made angle food cake in a regular angel food cake pan.  I had made it in loaf pans many times here and it worked just fine, so I thought it would be fine to use a traditional, tube in the middle type pan.  Nope!  Bad idea… Really bad idea!  I had angel food cake all over the bottom of the oven.  Honestly, it was like a volcano in my oven, and it made a huge amount of smoke while it lay burning on the oven floor.  When it was done, I had about 1/2″ cake in the pan and I had to scrape the rest out of the oven.  What a mess!  It was very funny though.

I found this recipe for banana bread and it works great for me every single time, so it’s a keeper.  I think it will work equally well at lower altitudes, so give it a try.  I’ve altered it a bit and you should feel free to do the same for your family.  Food is all about what you like and making it to your preference, so take a chance and be creative!

Before you start, you need to know that the riper the bananas, the better your bread will be.  These bananas were probably ripe about two weeks ago (and they look really horrible now), but as you can see, they’re good on the inside, so they’re perfect for banana bread.

Now, put your bananas in a bowl and mash them up really well.  Add 4 tablespoons soft butter and 2 eggs.  Mix this until combined and so the butter is in small pieces.

Combine 2/3 cup sugar, 1 1/3 cup flour, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.  Slowly pour it, while mixer is on low, into banana mixture and stir until well blended.

Add any other ingredients that you would like, such as 1/2-3/4 cups of dried cranberry’s, chocolate chips, chopped walnuts or any other nut you desire (my preference is dried cranberrys and walnuts, although I used chopped almonds today since I was out of walnuts).  Mix until combined.  Pour into  9″x5″ greased pan or two smaller pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 25-30 minutes if you’re making two loaves and for about 50 minutes if you’re making this into one loaf.  Bread is done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  DO NOT OVERBAKE or bread will be dry.  Cool for 5-10 minutes before taking out of pan.  Enjoy!

Banana Bread

3 ripe bananas

4 Tablespoons soft butter

2 eggs

2/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 cup flour

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 Tablespoon cinnamon

1/2-3/4 cups each dried fruit, chocolate chips, chopped nuts, or anything else you want

Mix bananas, butter and eggs until well blended.  Put all dry ingredients together and then pour slowly into banana mixture while mixing slowly.  Lastly, add the dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips, or anything you would like.  Mix just until well blended.  Pour into greased 9″x5″ pan (or 2 smaller pans) and bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes (25-30 if using smaller pans).  Bread is done when toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.

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