½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 large very ripe bananas peeled and mashed (about 1 cup mush)
½ cup buttermilk heavy cream, half and half, whole milk, plain yogurt (Greek or otherwise), or sour cream
½ teaspoon grated orange zest or ½ teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
⅓ cup mini chocolate chips for sprinkling on top, optional
38 oz Rectangular
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1Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
2In a small bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
3In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until lightly and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla. Blend in the mashed bananas and buttermilk along with the orange zest or cinnamon, if using.
4Switch to a wooden spoon and add the flour mixture in batches to the batter, mixing just until each addition is incorporated. At the end the batter should be barely blended (it will be thick). Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
5Sprinkle the chips on top, if desired. Bake until a toothpick or wooden skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn the loaf out of the pan and finishing cooling the bread upright on the wire rack.