You may have noticed (or not, it’s cool) that I haven’t posted that many banana bread recipes on this site. Ready for my shameful secret? Please don’t hate me.
Cue stage whisper: I’m not that into banana.
Don’t go screaming now. I can’t handle that. It’s not that I hate it or anything, but in the world of baked goods, anything with banana ranks low. So take it as a sign of how much I love you all that from time to time, I produce a banana-based dessert. That is some selflessness. Of course, I did add a wee bit of peanut butter (and peanut butter chips, too) to make this more of a Mir-style dessert. And there’s strawberry jelly in there. You know, because this is totally healthy. Uh huh.
This is my first day back on the job, and I’m excited about another school year. Every year, I meet tons of really cool kids and learn even more about how to be the best possible teacher. The only part I’m not excited about is grading papers.
If you have any friends who are teachers, they’ll pretty much agree that the job is rewarding and fun, except the grading. During a typical week, I’m bringing home about 200 essays or short stories to grade, and that’s when things are running about average. On a heavy week, it gets a lot worse. I’ve been known to grade papers in traffic jams, in grocery store lines, and yes, on exam tables in the doctor’s office when he’s making me wait for 45 minutes in a giant paper towel that the medical industry has the audacity to call a “gown.”
While I’d love to keep complaining about grading papers, that’s a lot more boring than complaining about those paper gowns. Has anyone worn them? Seriously, they’re not big enough to cover squat. Nothing is worse than desperately trying to cover your rear end while the gown tears in 17 different places. So if you’re tired of shivering away in a giant paper mat while all of your body parts pop out into the wind, join me in a protest. Seriously. Let’s organize and get rid of those pieces of crap.
Can you tell I get really annoyed about really little things? But you know, it’s the little things that sometimes resonate the most. The big stuff is much easier to pay attention to, while life’s little irritants just kind of pile up unnoticed until you kind of explode. Or that’s how I feel.
I’ve said it before, but it’s a dang good thing that I have baking to distract me from the paper gowns and paper grading. Oooh, both paper. I sense a trend!
This banana bread is in a pretty happy place, and that’s from a person who feels very meh about bananas. The batter is free of butter. Instead, peanut butter and canola oil do that job quite nicely, and in a much healthier way. Anyone who has ever had bananas and peanut butter must realize how well this combo works. Add the peanut butter chips in there along with a strawberry jelly swirl, and even I’m a banana bread convert.
Tomorrow I’m back to the grind, and I need a healthier dessert to get me through. This is a good way to start! I’m not sure if a good dessert will ever fully distract me from the humiliation of a paper gown or the piles of grading, but there’s only so much we can do. Unless you’re with me on that petition. Let me know, people!
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter (I used Jif Natural)
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup sour cream (I used light)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 and 1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
mashed ripe bananas (2 big or 3 small)
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/3 cup strawberry jelly
- Preheat the oven to 350. Coat a loaf pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine the egg, both sugars, peanut butter, oil, sour cream and vanilla, mixing until smooth.
- In a smaller bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Combine with the peanut butter mixture until just incorporated.
- Stir in the mashed banana, mixing until a smooth batter forms. Fold in the peanut butter chips.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Drop the jelly by spoonfuls on top of the batter and use a knife to swirl it in.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Cool and cut into slices.