banana bread

i tried the atk banana bread recipe since so far all the recipes out of that book have been pretty good.

bbread3

banana bread
from america’s test kitchen family baking book

2 cups (10 oz) AP flour
3/4 cup (5.25 oz) sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 large very ripe bananas, mashed well (1.5 cups)
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1/4 cup whole or low-fat plain yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup (2 oz) walnuts, toasted and chopped course (optional)

1. adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. grease an 8.5 x 4.5 loaf pan.

2. whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. in a medium bowl, whisk the mashed bananas, melted butter, eggs, yogurt, and vanilla together. gently fold the banana mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined (do not overmix). fold in the walnuts if using. the batter will look thick and chunky.

bbread1

3. scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs attached, about 55 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking.

bbread2

4. let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and let cool for 1 hour before serving.

comments: atk says the secret is to have really ripe bananas. they also say you can freeze ripe bananas. anyway, this was another good recipe, except i should have baked mine a little less since i used a 9×5 pan. the edges were slightly dry because of that. this recipe is also one of the few that cameron and i can easily eat by ourselves. yummy as part of breakfast or for snack.

kusadamas

i like to fold origami at the football games, a habit i developed last season when i was folding for our wedding centerpieces. recently, i’ve been making some more of the kusadama types. the folding for these is very simple (see instructions here), but you need 60 units and some time to glue it together. i do the gluing while watching tv, but still, in total (folding + gluing) it probably takes 3-4 hours for each one. oh also, if you don’t want any of the “flowers” of the same color to touch, the minimum is four different colors.

anyway, i had some leftover paper from the wedding, so i made a small version:

small-kusadama

it’s so cute! then i was thinking it might be nice as a christmas ornament, but had to get some brighter colors:

larger-kusadama

this one is a little bigger than the small one. i think this one will look pretty good on a tree. so i might make some more to give to family members… can’t make that many though since they take so long to make. here they are just hanging out together on the couch:

kusadamas

anyway, those are the ones i’m working on now, but lots more to try!