Cardamom Banana Bread

As long as I’ve known Shane (coming up on six years), he’s wanted to go on a camping trip.

My idea of camping is staying at a hotel that doesn’t leave a mint on the pillow. (HEY-O! I’ll be here all week!)

So we’ve never been. Oh, Shane has tossed out the idea of buying a tent, snuggling in sleeping bags and finding a wild spot near a waterfall — but it’s never come to anything. And, I certainly did nothing to encourage it.

Until this year — sort of. Last week, we headed down to the Hayowentha cabin in Onanda Park, a former YMCA camp turned public park on the shores of Canandaigua lake. (I made sure to get the only cabin with an indoor bathroom.) We cooked on a grill outside, or used the propane fueled Coleman stove Shane bought for the occasion.

Just before we left, though, I used some nearly over-ripe bananas to bake up loaf a Cardamom Banana bread. I increased the amount of ground cardamom (to one teaspoon) but still couldn’t detect it in the final product (sigh). Still, the bread was delicious: it had a fresh banana flavor that I haven’t tasted in banana breads before and it was wonderfully moist. The bread was a wonderful quick breakfast or afternoon snack at the camp ground.

Cardamom Banana Bread (adapted)

2 cups cake flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1 teaspoon ground cardamom (or more)

Preheat oven to 350-degrees and coat a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

Place sugars and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana, sour cream, and cardamom; beat until blended. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist. Stir in pistachios. Spoon batter into loaf pan and bake for an hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool bread completely on wire rack.

Categories: Fruits, Grade Range: A- to A+, Lighter Fare, Quick Breads


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