I am slightly less crazed this week, and banana bread is part of the reason why… In the midst of wedding planning bumps, broken appliances (dishwasher, still…), traveling husbands, unnecessary weight gain (ahem…stress equals sweets) and sibling squabbles (don’t ask!) I took a deep breath and retreated to the kitchen to beat sugar and eggs with a whisk for 10 minutes by hand.

Because that is the way that Joanne Chang does it… And somewhere around minute four, right after my shoulder really began to ache, I remembered a quote by Jon Bloom: “Just because we cannot control trouble does not mean trouble is in control”.

Indeed. So why do I always focus on the trouble? (Minute six – Working Girl is marrying a wonderful guy and their life together will amount to far more than the sum total of our wedding plans… Minute eight – stuff breaks, and the people who fill our home are way more important than the stuff that is in it… Minute ten – do what you can, do it the best you can, and then trust God with the rest!)

And occasionally make banana bread! Everyone loves it, everyone knows it and everyone can do it! At the Flour Bakery in Boston (which I believe now has multiple locations), the banana bread has achieved a somewhat cult status. So when the recipe was published naturally I tucked it away for just such a moment as this!

It is a deliriously moist and delicious bread, and it keeps beautifully for several days. I plan to ration the slices as best I can, and I further resolve to keep better notes so those pesky little details do not get away from me!

Gather Up:
1 2/3 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 eggs
 ½ cup oil
3 ½ bananas, very ripe, mashed
2 tablespoons crème fraiche or sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a loaf pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.

Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.

In a large bowl beat the sugar and eggs with a whisk until light and fluffy, about 10 minutes.

Whisk in the oil. Add the mashed bananas, crème fraiche and vanilla.

Fold in dry ingredients and nuts.

Pour into prepared pan and bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, until toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan briefly, and then turn out onto cooling rack.

Recipe from Chef Joanne Chang of Flour Bakery in Boston.