I'm going bananas for this banana-nut bread today. The combination of the sweet bananas and the crunchy walnuts is the perfect way to start the day or savor for an afternoon snack. The key to delicious banana bread is using extra ripe bananas (the more brown spots the better) and the addition of cinnamon sugar on the top for a crisp crust.
Banana-Nut Bread adapted from Williams-Sonoma)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (at room temperature)
1 cup sugar
3 very ripe bananas (coarsely mashed)
3 eggs (lightly beaten)
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (or pecans)
Optional: Cinnamon sugar
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and lightly flour a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.
In a large bowl beat together the butter and sugar on medium speed until creamy (about 1 minute). Add the bananas and eggs and beat until smooth. Add the buttermilk and beat just until combined.
In a bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, salt and walnuts. Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture and beat just until combined. The batter should be slightly lumpy.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and sprinkle top with cinnamon sugar and a handful of chopped walnuts. Bake until the loaf is dark golden brown and dry to the touch and the edges pull away from the sides of the pan around 55 to 60 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. Let the bread rest in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn the loaf out onto a wire rack and let it cool completely before serving.