Of all the items in a grocery store that perplex me, it happens to be bananas. I am sure that your family has that one “special” item too. Bananas drive me bananas! Maybe it is because they are the first item I see when I walk into the grocery store. We are not allergic, nor do we have some type of aversion to them. As a matter of fact everyone at my house likes bananas. It seems that we either don’t have enough bananas, or we have too many that sit on the counter and turn brown. They are either too ripe or not ripe enough for my kids to find them worthy of a snack. If I don’t buy them one week, everyone wants one for breakfast. If I do purchase them, the consensus seems to be that bananas have suddenly become gross. The problem is that I live in teenageland. It has very similar parallels to toddlerland. You have no control, people get mad for no apparent reason, and food is a challenge.
For those of you who haven’t yet arrived, teenageland is a strange place. Days and nights are reversed. At any point in 24 hours, someone in the house is awake at the same time someone is asleep. I am still not certain what activity requires stomping around at 3:00 AM. When I ask my kids what in the HELL they were doing in the middle of the night that involved running up and down the stairs, opening and closing drawers, and slamming doors, I am met with a blank look. The teenagers in question have no idea what I am talking about. They were just innocently hanging out in their rooms.
Food is another issue. The meals that were declared delicious last week and suddenly disgusting. Snacks that used to be gone in a day are left to go stale, along with five bags or so other discarded food bags….left open in the pantry…or on the basement floor…or under the bed… The thing is, you just never know what is going to happen on any given day. See the toddler parallel? My husband is very good at not taking the uncertainty to heart, but for some reason, I am still trying to make sense of their unformed teenage brains. I know in my head that I shouldn’t, but I just can’t help myself. What should I make for dinner? Will either kid even be home for dinner? Should I make extra so there are leftovers, or will I end up throwing it all away? Who is speaking to me today? Why isn’t she speaking to me?
So, back to the age old banana dilemma. I have no solutions on whether they should be purchased or not. But I will leave you with this…a very simple banana bread recipe. It is easy, doesn’t need a mixer, yeast, or special flour. You don’t have to create a sourdough starter or let it rise at exactly 85 degrees. It is just yummy, quick to mix up, and always tastes good…and best of all, no bananas are wasted, and no teenagers are harmed. Banana bread also doesn’t ever seem to spoil in my house. It is a win-win situation. Sometimes the simple things in life make the best party, my friends.
- Four ripe bananas, smashed (when mine get too ripe, I stick them in a freezer bag until I can bake)
- ⅓ cup melted butter
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350°
- With a potato masher, big fork, or wooden spoon, smash the bananas in a large mixing bowl
- Mix the melted butter into the bananas
- Stir in the sugar, egg, and vanilla
- Add the flour and mix in
- Spray or butter a 4×8 loaf pan
- Pour in the mixture
- Bake for 1 hour
- Cool and enjoy
Note: I have also added peanut butter, nuts, or chocolate chips…or all of these. It makes it a bit more dense but still delicious.