About a year and a half ago, I decided to use some bananas well past their prime to make a loaf of banana bread (instead of just tossing them and cursing my wastefulness as usual). I used my mom’s recipe, which I know – from much eating experience – to work quite well. But somehow, my bread turned out terribly. It was dry and gummy – gross.

As I tend to do when facing any problem, I wrote a blog post about my banana bread issues. And you all had some great suggestions. I dutifully tried some of them the next time I attempted banana bread. I’m sorry to tell you: It didn’t help.

So when I saw a recipe for Ultimate Banana Bread when perusing a food carnival, I decided I’d give it a try. Am I ever glad I did! It was SO good! I overcooked one of the loaves a tad bit, so the end pieces were a little dry. But that is most definitely my fault – and something I can fix next time.

Ultimate Banana Bread

3/4 cup butter, softened
1-8 oz package cream cheese, softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 medium)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Streusel Topping Ingredients:
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp melted butter
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together butter and cream cheese (with an electric mixer).Add sugar, eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl combine flour, baking power, baking soda and salt. Add flour mixture to cream cheese mixture and mix. The dough will be really stiff, so don’t be alarmed by that! Stir in mashed bananas. Spoon batter into two greased loaf pans. Mix streusel ingredients together and sprinkle streusel over each loaf. Bake for one hour or until toothpick (a really long toothpick) inserted into the center comes out clean.

Finally, I’ve mastered the art of banana bread. It’s a baking miracle! (Too dramatic? Then you underestimated the sadness of my previous banana bread experiences.)

Have you mastered any recipes lately? Do you like banana bread? And what do you think: If you eat streusel-topped bread with a fork, is it really a coffee cake?

This post will be linked to Mouthwatering Monday, Tasty Tuesday, Tuesdays at the Table, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, 33 Shades of GreenSweet Tooth Friday, Foodie Friday, Friday Firsts and Food on Fridays. It will also be linked to Ingredient Spotlight at Eat at Home.

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