I already have some good banana bread recipes in my repertoire. So why would I choose to make yet another version? One word: bourbon. Plus, I was out of flax meal. But mostly, bourbon. I honestly wasn't sure how heavy-handed this recipe would taste, but the bourbon sits quietly in the background, accenting everything else. I mean, you can tell it's there, but it's not running things. And the finished product is delicious, especially warm with butter.
Note: I found that my bread was almost burnt before it was done in the middle. I would recommend covering the top with some foil when you're getting close to done to keep it from getting too dark.
Chocolate Bourbon-Spiked Banana Bread
From Joy the Baker Cookbook, as seen at Leite's Culinaria
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for the pan
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1½ cups (about 3) mashed ripe bananas (be certain to measure your mashed bananas and only use 1½ cups)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons bourbon, plus more for the baker
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 350°F and place a rack in the center of the oven. Butter and flour a 9x5-inch loaf pan, tapping out any excess flour.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.
Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating for 1 minute between additions. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the bananas, lemon juice, and bourbon and beat with the paddle until well incorporated. The mixture may look curdled, but that’s okay.
Turn the mixer to low, add the flour mixture all at once, and beat until almost completely incorporated. Stop the mixer, add the walnuts and chocolate, and stir by hand with a spatula or wooden spoon just until incorporated. Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf pan.
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a skewer inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
Let the loaf cool in the pan for 20 minutes before inverting it onto a wire rack and letting it cool completely, if you can manage to keep your hands off it. The banana bread will keep, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for up to 5 days at room temperature.
Makes 12 servings