Got this nice note from Sheela, my dear friend from Hyderabad who also happens to be a regular RKK reader (she doesn’t have a choice sometimes when I also call her to tell her about it ;), RKK’s proof reader, critic and an eloquent freelance journalist in the very happening metroplex in India, Hyderabad. Here it is…
Read this in the Reader’s Digest.Thought I might share it with you.
” I learned that less can be more, that pulling back is good, that slowly is okay. These beliefs are all contrary to our way of life where life is so full, busy and fast. We think that if we’re not doing something, we’re not valuable. Not true! I learned that making time for myself was vital to good health.
My other solace is Nature.
I’ve retained an appreciation for good food, but I’ve learned to serve meals from a place of love. We should cook good food because we care about the people we’re doing it for. It’s not about playing the gourmand.”
She suggested that she wanted to send this for the RKK anniversary but this was probably the best time for it.
Couldn’t have been more apt. For the last month, I’ve been nagged by guilt – the guilt of procrastination. I realize I haven’t been as prompt as I should in writing, as recipes and pictures keep piling up, waiting to get some life of their own. As much as I love poring through other blogs, this guilt has led me to almost be a little fearful to look at the other gourmet creations, fearful that the guilt will haunt me even more.
The words mentioned above make me take a deep breath and realize that this hobby of mine is more than recreating Amma’s recipes or visiting Anusuya’s kitchen or even packing Nikhil’s lunches…it’s about the satisfaction of dishing it out, on the table and in words, with love. It has to come from the heart and sometimes that only happens once or probably two or three times a month. It’s okay to stop and smell the roses, or the food once in a while.
Enough pontificating. This recipe is one that I’ve tried for many months with many variations and I finally think that it deserves to be shared here. I added the quotes to Nana since this recipe is adapted for one. The other reason is that Nana obviously means Grandma and I don’t call my grandmother “Nana”. She is “Paatti” to me. So maybe this should be renamed “Patti’s Banana Bread”. But my Paatti never really made banana bread. And so it will remain in quotes as an adapted recipe.
I’ve used eggs in this recipe after many attempts at making eggless kinds. Though I have to say one recipe from “Understocked Veggie Kitchen” penned by another good friend of mine is probably one of the best eggless variations I’ve tried.
This particular recipe calls for eggs and substituting it with Egg replacer or flax seeds or other variations doesn’t really give you the same results. If you do stick to the measurements and the ingredients, you get a really moist, flavorful bread.
5 tbsps butter
1/2 cup organic natural sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups mashed, very ripe bananas
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (here I used half measure white flour and half measure whole wheat flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup heavy cream (optional, you can also use milk)
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray the bottom of a loaf pan with nonstick cooking sprat.
2. Beat butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer set at medium speed until light and fluffy.
3. Add sugar, brown sugar and beat well. Add egg, egg whites and vanilla; beat until well blended.
4. Add mashed banana, and beat on high speed for 30 seconds.
5. Combine flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder in a medium bowl. Add flour mixture to the butter mixture alternately with cream, ending with the flour mixture. Add walnuts to the batter and mix well.
6. Pour the batter evenly into the loaf pan. Bake until browned and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. This will take approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.
7. Cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Remove bread from the pan and cool completely. You can also wrap it in plastic wrap after it cools and leave it out overnight. It always tastes better the next day!