Sunday, April 21, 2013

Double Chocolate-Cherry Banana Bread

If you have extra bananas like I always seem to have, this is a wonderfully different banana bread recipe you may want to try...especially if you have a fondness for chocolate and cherries! This bread is slightly crispy and crusty on the outside, and dense and moist on the inside...perfect with a cup of coffee or tea! I adapted it from a Taste of Home recipe, adding some mini semi-sweet chocolate chips and a few more cherries and chopped pecans to the batter. It's not overly sweet and has a nice balance of cherry and chocolate flavor. You can refrigerate or freeze leftovers–the crusty outside moistens up a bit when stored in the refrigerator overnight if you prefer your quick breads that way.

DOUBLE CHOCOLATE-CHERRY BANANA BREAD by Cottage Flavor, adapted from Taste of Home

Makes a 9 x 5" loaf
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2/3  to 3/4 cup dried cherries
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup light or regular sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease or spray a 9 x 5" loaf pan; set aside.

In small container or bowl, pour boiling water over dried cherries; let stand 15 minutes, then drain well. 

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat softened butter and sugar until crumbly, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs until smooth.

In small bowl, combine banana, sour cream, and vanilla; blend well.

In medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; add to butter mixture alternately with banana mixture, blending everything well.

Coarsely chop the drained cherries, then fold the cherries, chopped pecans, and mini semi-sweet chocolate chips into the batter.

Spoon batter into loaf pan and bake at 350˚F for 45 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean or almost clean (it may not come out totally clean because of the chocolate chips in the batter). Cool 10 minutes; then remove from pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Slice and serve. You should be able to get about 16 slices from this loaf.

I enjoy trying different kinds of banana bread recipes. Do you have a favorite?

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