I was in a baking mood last weekend. It was rainy, cool and somewhat dreary. We have sunshine and warm weather about 300 days out of the year, so comfort food baking is not always high on my list of “wants”.
On this particular day, I decided it was time to do something about the over ripened bananas that had been sitting in my freezer for a while. I have a bad tendency to buy them when they are perfect and forget to eat them until it is too late. I then remind myself they are now perfect for one of my favorite treats: Banana Bread. Unfortunately, I always end up with way more in the freezer than I will ever use. So, with a cup of hot green tea in hand, I had decided it was time to clean out the freezer of my frozen fruit!
My banana bread recipe is a relatively easy one–a recipe passed down from my mom and a reminder of how excited we kids would get when the aroma of sweet bananas and walnuts filled our kitchen. I had made this recipe so many times, I could probably do it in my sleep.
As I was prepping my ingredients, my cell phone chimed with a message….then another…and finally a third chime came through. I decided I had better glance at what was growing into a novella. It was a friend with some celebrity news. Mind you, she lives 700 miles from me, but she knew what was going on 2 miles from my kitchen.
It was not the best news I could have read–tragic really– but, like many others, I was quickly absorbed in the details of the event. I began texting her back as I turned on my mixer and set the oven temp. We were like ping pong players going back and forth with messages. Then, of course, I had to begin sharing this news with others. So, all the while I am glued to my phone, I am making my bread. After all, I could make this bread while doing at least 3 or 4 other things.
Or, so I thought.
My two loaves of bread were now in the oven and I decided to give my friend a call and chat while waiting. As the kitchen began to fill with the sweet fragrance of the bread, anticipation of that first bite began to grow quickly.
At last, time was up! I threw open the oven and what laid in front of me was a huge disappointment. Two flattened loaves–I had completely forgotten the leavening (baking powder).
Yup, I had done it…baked while distracted or more accurately, baked while under the influence of celebrity news. I couldn’t believe it. I decided, it couldn’t be that bad…I would enjoy it anyway. I cut a slice of this now dense bread and took a bite. Good flavor but just not the same.
So, what could I do with all this “deflated” bread? Biscotti anyone? Here is how I did it…
Cut your bread into 1/2″ slices.
The cut the slices in half so you have “sticks”
Place them on a cookie sheet and sprinkle sugar on top (optional). Place them in a 325 degree oven for 30-45 minutes or so. It really depends on the moisture of your bread–the wetter, the longer it will take. I would recommend flipping them over after about 20 minutes.
Once the biscotti feels nice and toasted, pull it out, let it cool and enjoy! You can bag these babies up and enjoy them for days or share with the office!