I realized the other day that I have owned Alton Brown’s I’m Just Here For More Food for over a year, and I have yet to cook anything out of it. I’ve read most of it and absorbed the science of baking, but never actually used any of the recipes. And that is just plain silly. Since I had three bananas rapidly approaching the peak of over-ripeness, and no particular recipe for them in mind, I decided to finally pull out I’m Just Here for More Food for something other than some light reading and made banana bread.
This banana bread was so good that I think I’ve found my go to recipe. Everything was balanced: it was moist, perfectly sweet, and had great banana flavor. It was like the banana bread my mom used to pack in my lunch, but better. This makes for a great, only slightly indulgent breakfast, or a positively saintly dessert!
I really can’t believe it took me this long to actually make something from this book (technically, my favorite buttermilk pancakes come from here, but John made them)! It’s a very well designed baking book, pretty much exactly what you would expect from Alton Brown. The chapters are based on technique, and you use the master technique for every recipe in each chapter. There’s also lots of science-y explanations of ingredients and how baking works. Not only is it a great recipe book, it’s also a very useful baking reference book.
I’m Just Here For More Food by Alton Brown
1 cup sugar
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup oat flour (according to google, you can make oat flour simply by grinding up oats in the food processor, which is what I did)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup nuts (walnuts, pecans, or almonds) chopped (I used walnuts)
Place an oven rack in position C (that would be the center) and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a 9x5x2.5 inch loaf pan and set aside.
Place the bananas and sugar in a large mixing bowl and mash them together with a potato masher until smooth (obviously this is impossible with all but the most overripe of bananas).
Proceed with the muffin method. Combine the Wet Works 1 (the bananas and sugar) and the Wet Works 2 (the butter, eggs, and almond extract) in separate bowls, then combine together before add the Wet Works to the Dry Goods (both flours, the baking soda, and the salt).
Fold in the nuts, if using, then pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until the temperature measures 210 degrees, or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out more or less clean, but banana bread should come out of the oven a little moister than most.
Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then remove it from the pan and place on a rack to cool completely before slicing.
Tightly wrapped, this bread will keep at room temperature for 5 days.