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Bowl-of-Oatmeal Banana Bread

banana bread recipeWith two boys in the house, banana bread is in heavy rotation around here. Fortunately, a plain loaf takes well to creativity – I almost always add a handful of berries, raisins, seeds, chocolate chips, coconut, freshly grated lemon zest or ginger to change it up. On a bleak midwinter morning, as I made steaming bowls of cinnamon-spiked oatmeal with raisins for breakfast, it occurred to me that the flavors would translate well to a banana loaf. They did.

You could use old-fashioned or quick oats in this quick bread – the only difference is the size of the flake and the resulting texture. To bake the batter as muffins, divide it among paper-lined muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes until the tops are springy to the touch.

Bowl-of-Oatmeal Banana Bread

3 very ripe bananas
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup canola or other vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour (I usually use half all-purpose, half whole wheat)
1/2 cup oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
a handful of raisins

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

In a large bowl, mash the bananas, sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla with a potato masher – don’t worry about getting all the lumps out. It will look sort of cottage-cheesy.

Add the flour, oats, cinnamon, baking soda and salt and stir until almost combined; add raisins and stir just until blended. Spread into an 8″x4″ loaf pan that has been sprayed with non-stick spray and bake for 50 minutes, until golden and cracked on top and springy to the touch.

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