Friday, January 14, 2011

Bulk Cooking - Banana Bread & Muffins

AJ and I have decided that we are going to do everything we can to stock up our freezers (a half size chest freezer and a full sized upright) before this little Bug gets here.  We have been really good about keep food stores on hand, and always having something to cook, but this is a whole new level for us.  So, to get us started I decided to make something easy - banana bread and muffins.

The recipe I use is from Betty Crocker's Cookbook: Everything You Need to Know to Cook Today, Ninth Edition.  I absolutely LOVE it!  This cookbook was one of the first I bought back in college and it has helped make many a great meal.  This recipe is the best banana bread recipe I have found and it always gives me consistent results.

1 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter - softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3 medium)
1/2 cup buttermilk ( I always use regular milk and vinegar - I never have buttermilk)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I have used half whole wheat before & it is yummy!)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Grease bottoms of 2 loaf pans or muffin tins.
3. Mix sugar and butter.
4. Stir in eggs until well blended.
5. Stir in bananas, buttermilk, and vanilla - beat until smooth.
6. Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt until just moist.
7. Divide batter into either loaf pans or muffin tins.
8. Bake loaves for 1 hour 5 minutes or muffins for 25 minutes.
9. Cool 10 minutes in pan on wire rack.
10. Remove from pan and let cool for 2 hours.

I made two loaves and 48 muffins (though only 45 got packed into the freezer).  I had a minor goof with the loaves - I used baking powder instead of baking soda.  Apparently, that won't mess with the bread too much, just make them not rise as much.  I was worried it would make them gooey.  After the loaf batch I decided to make muffins instead of more loaves.  I figured that would actually be easier to deal with and help with some portion control. This way I can use them as breakfast and snacks, but not have to thaw the full loaf.  It also gave me the ability to make 24 of them with chocolate chips.  I love chocolate chip banana muffins!

I am participating in A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa's Simple Lives Thursday, Fingerprints on the Fridge's Feature Yourself Friday, and Fun to Craft's Look at Me

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