Yet another recipe that I was none too excited about at first glance, but happy to have made in the end. I love banana bread, but we just made banana cake for TWD a couple of weeks ago, and last week's TWD was an apple recipe. Banana apple bread seemed a little repetitive to me. However, all of the SMS bakers who made this earlier than this morning, ahem, raved about it so much I had to give it a shot.
When I started making it, I realized that this is no regular banana bread: the first step is to saute cubed, peeled apples - I used pink lady instead of granny smith - in butter, sugar - palm sugar in my case, with a little vanilla extract stirred in at the end. Well, if those apples were any indication of the final result, I knew I was in for a treat. They were a dessert unto themselves.
Other than the apples, the only non-traditional ingredient was the addition of orange juice. I was hoping to taste it in the bread when it was baked, but I couldn't. There was only 1/4 cup, though.
The bread smelled great as it was baking, though it took a bit longer to bake than the recipe stated - mine was in the oven for an hour and 8 minutes.
I used palm sugar in the bread itself as well as the topping, and it gave my bread a dark golden color that I loved.
My husband said this was the best banana bread he has ever had, though I don't agree. I thought it was delicious, but couldn't really taste the banana - which is what he liked about it. To me it was more of an apple spice bread. I think it would be delicious to replace the banana with pumpkin and add some ginger. I'll certainly do this later in the fall.
This bread is incredibly moist, and has a wonderful crust that was slightly crispy. Though it won't become my go-to recipe, I gobbled up two thick slices minutes after it came out of the oven. I'm just a bit of a banana bread purist, I suppose...