Saturday baking: by J

I’m not much of a baker, there I said it. Amazing bakers of the world feel free to shun me.

Baking is tough for me because the transformation and the magic happens away from my tampering hands. When I am cooking I am usually tasting, and adding and subtracting as I go. I am lazy with recipes, and baking seems to require them. Plus I have no self-control, so it is best that I don’t have copious amounts of freshly baked goods in my apartment.

That being said, I do make banana bread. We usually have a lonely spotty and browning banana in the fruit bowl every few weeks, which I pop in the freezer until I have 5 or so.

Lately, the weather in San Francisco has been down right hostile. Cloudy skies and chilly winds are sadly typical summer weather here. So warm cozy banana bread was just what I needed. K will probably roll her eyes at the thought of turning on an oven in NY right now.

I always use Sarah Britton’s recipe from her amazingly healthful and beautiful blog My New Roots. Her blog is perfect for the food lover, and especially anyone who wants to have a deeper understanding of their relationship to food and nutrition. I follow her recipe nearly exactly except I often add a tsp of cinnamon, and 1 or 2 grated carrots.


  • ¼ cup milk of your choice (I use unsweetened almond milk)
  • 6 Tbsp. olive oil, melted butter, ghee, coconut oil (I use olive oil)
  • 6 Tbsp. maple syrup (the real deal please)
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ¼ cups mashed ripe bananas (approximately 5 medium bananas/ that I let thaw on the counter for a few hours in a dish because they tend to get a little messy)
  • 2 cups flour (I use wholewheat)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped nuts + seeds (I use walnuts)
  • ¾ cup chopped dark chocolate (1 standard 100 g bar) – optional
  • 1-2 grated carrots – optional


  • Set the oven to 350 degrees
  • peal and mash the bananas until smooth and mix in the milk, oil, syrup and vanilla
  • mix the dry ingredients in a bowl
  • pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix just until combined, then add the carrot, nuts, and chocolate, folding lightly
  • pour into a loaf pan or 8″x8″ cake pan
  • loaf is ready when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. For me this is about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Sarah says the original recipe calls for just 30 minutes, and she says she usually need 1 hour, so this may take some trial and error depending on your oven. I also always use the loaf pan, which should take a little longer than a cake pan would.

I like to serve it slightly cooled with butter, or just as is.


3 thoughts on “Saturday baking: by J

  1. Pingback: spelt love: by J | fogandfireflies

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