browned butter banana bread

nanna nanna nanna nanna...batman!
just kidding. it's nanna bread instead.

my search for the perfect banana bread recipe has been a long one. i've found some tasty ones, but for some reason the quantity has always been off. either the loaves overflowed in the oven (hot mess. literally.) or failed to rise enough (disappointing), or filled several mini loaf pans (because i wanted extra dishes to wash...) i finally hit gold with this recipe, which incorporates browned butter* for depth, and yields a perfect, puffy loaf packed with fresh banana flavor.

you can also adapt the recipe by folding in chocolate chips, fresh strawberry pieces, walnuts and/or to sprinkle the top with a little turbinado sugar for a sweet crust.

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| ingredients | 

1/2 cup unsalted butter
4 large very ripe bananas, peeled
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, room temp
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
turbinado sugar (optional)

| method | 

brown butter over medium heat* and set aside to cool slightly. 
*if you've never browned butter before, check out this tutorial prior to beginning. browned butter is kind of a life changer - it imparts a nutty, caramel flavor into everything.

beat butter and sugar in an electric mixer on medium-low speed for 2 minutes. scrape down the sides of the bowl and add eggs one at a time, beating lightly after each addition. add the vanilla extract, peeled bananas, and buttermilk. mix on medium speed until incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. 

preheat oven to 350 degrees and generously grease a loaf pan.

in a medium sized bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt with a whisk. gently add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.

pour batter into the prepared loaf pan sprinkle the top with turbinado sugar (if using) and bake for 45-60 minutes, until golden brown and baked through. if needed, cover the loaf with foil to avoid over-browning. 

remove to cool on a wire rack. let cool for 15 minutes before turning out to cool to room temp.