Just like a good bowline knot, I find banana bread to be a staple in nautical life. Bananas are cheap and ubiquitous in so many sailing Meccas. The hot places. The ones where bananas ripen as soon as they are picked. And what are over-ripe bananas good for? That’s right… banana bread!
When I stumbled across 4 blackening bananas in our fruit hammock I knew what I was making that day. But plain banana bread, tasty as it may be, can get boring. And I was in Michigan, where good cherries go to die. And so cherry almond bowline banana bread was born.
Okay, so banana bread might not be quite as useful as a bowline, but it sure is tastier.
Cherry Almond Bowline Banana Bread
Makes 2 loaves
- 3 ripe bananas
- 1 c sugar
- 3 eggs
- ¾ c vegetable oil
- ½ c milk
- 2 ½ c. flour
- ½ t baking powder
- 1 t baking soda
- ½ t salt
- 1 T cinnamon
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 T almond extract
- ½ cup chopped almonds
- ½ cup chopped tart dried cherries
- Handful of slivered almonds to sprinkle on top
- Preheat oven to 350◦ F 176◦C, or medium on your oven
- Oil 2 loaf pans
- Mix dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt)
- Make a well in the middle and pour in milk, oil, eggs, and sugar
- Stir 2 minutes stirring in the cinnamon and extracts
- Squish the bananas into the batter. The riper they are the better.
- Blend batter until smooth
- Add nuts and dried fruit
- Pour mixture into pans
- Sprinkle almonds on top
- Bake for ½ hour turning after 15 minutes
- Leave the bread in the pan for at least ½ an hour so that the crumb can set and it doesn’t fall apart when taking it out
- Many baked goods are best fresh out of the oven. Not banana bread. After 24 hours the banana goodness infuses the bread and the flavors come out singing together in perfect harmony. I’ve found it reaches its peak at 2 days. Just cover the loaves in cling wrap and wait. If you can keep yourself from eating it, that is.
Detroit Yacht Club