Saturday, January 26, 2019

Banana Bread Bites

My blog has definitely been nudged to the side ever since I started teaching. When I owned a daycare in my house, the garden and blog were an integral part of my daily life. Now, halfway through my third year of teaching public school, the garden has become a refuge I seek--sometimes desperately--and my blog is an oft-forgotten haven that I revisit only occasionally.

When my sister-in-law texted me last week wondering
where I'd found alphabet pasta for Better Than Campbell's Soup (always a hit with my littles, and my nephew is the little boy mentioned in the post), I was flattered. I had forgotten all about that precious soup, and the idea that my cooking had left a mark, a lasting memory, filled my heart. I came back here and read several posts, smiling, and even tearing up. The blog was a way for me to collect so many memories from such a full and wonderful time in my life.

Just today she texted me again! This time she wondered if I could send her the recipe I used for banana bread bars. I had made them for our family Christmas and everyone loved them. I think my nephew must have eaten 10. She wanted to make them for a cub scout gathering.

Since I'm a tinker-cook and usually stray from the recipes that I find, I couldn't direct her to a link; the recipe is combined from several others. Surely, I figured, this was a sign. I thought that if I was going to type up how I made these and send the recipe to Laura, I might as well throw together a quick post. This would serve two purposes; I'd get to feel the warm-fuzzies I always get when writing blog posts, and once finished, I would have a place to easily find this recipe. I often have to resort to googling my own recipes (at least the ones I've published here) since my memory fails and my paper recipes are a huge disorganized mess.

Now, the reason I make banana bars is a practical one: it's EASIER than a loaf. Easier to cut up and easier to eat. Kids love things that come in bite size pieces. So instead of 'bars', I usually cut these into small 2 inch squares. Okay, who am I kids are nearly all grown. I am the one who loves things in bite sized pieces. I don't know if I will ever really grow up!

While banana bread recipes are a dime-a-dozen, this one is now special to me because it was requested. And in the process of fulfilling the request, I was inspired to brush the dust off this little old blog and make a tiny contribution.


Banana Bread Bites


5 bananas (frozen then thawed is fine)
3/4 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
1 egg
1/4 c. melted butter
1-1/2 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 c. chocolate chips (plus more if you'd like some on top)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a 10 by 15 inch   'jelly roll' pan by lightly oiling it with coconut oil (or use a butter wrapper to oil it).

2. In a large bowl, smash the bananas. Using a fork is fine.

3. Add sugar, vanilla and egg, and stir until combined. Add the melted butter (pour it in while stirring). Add flour, baking soda and salt, then stir until there are no longer streaks. Make sure to scrape the sides as you stir so that all the dry ingredients are incorporated.

4. Stir in 1/2 c. chocolate chips. Pour batter into prepared pan. If you like extra chocolate, sprinkle 1/4 to 1/2 c. more chips on top (this is a great job for the kids!). Tap the pan on the counter a few times to make sure it's even and to 'set' the chocolate chips on top.

5.Bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool, then cut up into whatever size pleases you!


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