Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Banana bread, and why Scout doesn't like it

Banana bread

The original recipe was found in the Pillsbury complete cook book and included 1/2 cup chopped nuts that I usually leave out.

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 eggs
2 medium bananas, ripe (if frozen, let thaw)
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease the bottom of a 9x5 or 8x4 inch loaf pan. Mix sugar and margarine in a large bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat well. Add the bananas, milk and vanilla and blend well. In a smaller bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt and stir well. Add the dry mixture to the banana mixture and stir just until the dry ingredients are moistened, then pour into your greased loaf pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap tightly and store in the refrigerator.

Our freezer is full of, among other things, a large collection of over ripe bananas. No longer suitable for eating plain they get tossed into the freezer until someone - usually me - decides to thin them out by making a batch or two (or three or four) of banana bread. That was the case a few days ago when I managed to fit a triple batch of banana bread into our mixer - just barely - and made up three loaves of banana bread that I left to cool on the counter. Naturally I took precautions - I pulled out the bread boards effectively pushing the banana bread to the back of the counter where Scout can't reach it. Unfortunately, Scout figured out that he could push the bread boards back in. Now we practice basic math: if you made three loaves of banana bread and you only see two sitting on the counter, how many loaves did your mischievious dog make off with? 

Yep, Scout got a whole loaf of banana bread and had eaten at least a third of it before he was caught red handed, and he had slobbered all over the rest of it so the whole loaf was ruined. It wasn't a total loss though - the chickens had a field day with the other half of the loaf. I have yet to discover who might be the mastermind of these kitchen raids - the chickens benefit nearly as often as Scout does. Whoever was behind it, the plan backfired for Scout. It seems that a large portion of banana bread consumed all at once does not do the digestive system any favors as Scout was gassy for days afterwards. The next day he was offered a small piece of banana bread as a treat but would not touch it, having apparently grown sick of it. But as Scout is a slow learner I'm sure it will only be a matter of time before the process repeats itself with some other treat from the kitchen - he has already gotten a third of a jar of peanut butter a couple of months ago. Until then we can at least pretend that he is a good boy. Right?

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