Monday, July 23, 2007

Cardamom Banana Bread

As long as I've known Shane (coming up on six years), he's wanted to go on a camping trip.

My idea of camping is staying at a hotel that doesn't leave a mint on the pillow. (HEY-O! I'll be here all week!)

So we've never been. Oh, Shane has tossed out the idea of buying a tent, snuggling in sleeping bags and finding a wild spot near a waterfall -- but it's never come to anything. And, I certainly did nothing to encourage it.

Until this year -- sort of. Last week, we headed down to the Hayowentha cabin in Onanda Park, a former YMCA camp turned public park on the shores of Canandaigua lake. (I made sure to get the only cabin with an indoor bathroom.) We cooked on a grill outside, or used the propane fueled Coleman stove Shane bought for the occasion.

Just before we left, though, I used some nearly over-ripe bananas to bake up loaf a Cardamom Banana bread. I increased the amount of ground cardamom (to one teaspoon) but still couldn't detect it in the final product (sigh). Still, the bread was delicious: it had a fresh banana flavor that I haven't tasted in banana breads before and it was wonderfully moist. The bread was a wonderful quick breakfast or afternoon snack at the camp ground.

Cardamom Banana Bread (adapted)

2 cups cake flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1 teaspoon ground cardamom (or more)

Preheat oven to 350-degrees and coat a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

Place sugars and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana, sour cream, and cardamom; beat until blended. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist. Stir in pistachios. Spoon batter into loaf pan and bake for an hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool bread completely on wire rack.


Peabody said...

My idea of camping is that same as yours...luckily my husband is on board with that.

Laura Rebecca said...

Well, lucky for me, Shane digs the high life as much as I do (more, actually when it comes to clothes -- he owns $350 shoes). Still, once you've stayed in a hotel like this (which kicked ASS) why would you want to sleep on the ground?