I have some social anxiety issues.
Sometimes its problematic.
Like when I move to a big, new city and suddenly need to figure out how to make friends.
I’m terrible at making friends. Largely because I’m terrible at talking to people. Introductions of any kind freak. me. out. I’m pretty awful at talking to people I know, let alone people I’ve just met. I’m hardly eloquent on my best of days. Add that element of near-paralyzing social anxiety and I become a mumbling, bumbling, inarticulate mess.
Food helps. Somehow, if I am standing behind a plate of food, I feel ten times more comfortable (which is just enough to keep me from wanting to bolt and dive under the nearest blanket). Having food around, especially if its a dish I have made, helps put me in my element. Now I have something to talk about, some small way in which I can relate to the stranger in front of me. Food deflects the focus of the conversation away from me and saves me from asking leading questions that inevitably come out sounding canned or trite. So…how about them Dodgers…? I hate baseball. Please don’t talk to me about baseball. I can’t even handle it.
Which is why, when my boyfriend insisted on introducing our selves to our new neighbors, I made him wait until I made a snack to bring them (to hide behind). Enter Bananas Foster Bread with Butter Rum Glaze. Because, when you have social anxiety issues, a little bit of the hard stuff never hurts.
Now I love banana desserts (I make a killer banana cream pie), but I rarely make banana-y desserts, mostly because those sweet, starchy fruits never quite last long enough in my house to make it in to any baked good. I always buy bananas thinking I’ll let them ripen so that I can make a deliciously dense banana bread and theeeen, they’re gone. I just love bananas too much.
But my boyfriend recently discovered an immeasurable love for Cocoa Pebbles.
Wait, what does this have to do with leftover bananas? Well, pretty much everything. He decided that rice, sugar, and milk just didn’t fill him up in the morning (who would have thought), so he bought a bunch of bananas to slice up on top on his morning cereal. I assiduously held myself back from consuming those bananas.
I guess he didn’t have as difficult of a time keeping himself from eating them, because they were soon speckled and mushy. But on the bright side, I finally get to make banana bread!
Of course I can’t leave anything alone. And with the looming prospect of introducing myself to the new neighbors, I figured I could use a little rum in my life.
So why not a bananas foster in a banana bread? That was about as far as the thought process went. Simply “hell, why not”. Let’s torch the sucker!
I made a quick bananas foster on the stove top, used it in a simple banana bread recipe, then topped it with a glaze of reduced rum and butter. The brown sugar and rum in the batter and the icing elevate the simple, every day banana bread to something a little more elegant. Something you might expect in a fancy restaurant. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit, but that burnt rum flavor definitely lends a sultry, smooth depth to the bread. I recommend that you do NOT skip flaming off some of the alcohol in the icing. I feel that raw rum is too strong for the bread but reducing it really tones down that rum in to a much more palatable flavor.
By the way, I made that banana bread yesterday. It is now gone. Four slices went to the neighbors. I had 2 or 3 bites (bites). The rest….well, my man couldn’t keep himself from those bananas. I’ll take that as a complement.
Bananas Foster Bread with Butter Rum Glaze (heavily adapted from Banana Bread)
Makes 1 loaf
- 3 Tbs unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 3 overripe bananas, sliced
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 5 Tb unsalted butter, at room temp
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 Tb milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
For The Bananas Foster
- In a large saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in brown sugar until smooth.
- Add sliced bananas, stir to coat in butter-sugar mixture. Cook over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes until sugar begins to caramelize.
- Remove from heat and add rum. Return to heat. If you have a gas stove, tip pan slightly to ignite the rum. If not, use a long-stemmed lighter. Allow flame to die down.
- Let bananas cool slightly, then mash mixture. Set aside.
For The Bread
- Preheat oven to 325F. Grease and flour a 9x5x3 loaf pan.
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
- Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add milk and vanilla and mix.
- Add bananas foster and mix until well combined.
- Fold in dry ingredients until just incorporated.
- Pour mixture in to prepared loaf pan and bake in preheated oven for 1 hour or until a test toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cool completely.
- Remove bread by inverting pan and place on a large plate. Drizzle butter rum icing. Let icing set for 30 minutes before cutting.
Butter Rum Icing
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 2 Tb brown sugar
- 2 Tb unsalted butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1-2 Tb milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- In a small sauce pan, combine rum and brown sugar and heat over medium-high heat. Heat for 1-2 minutes, until brown sugar has dissolved.
- Ignite the rum with the gas stove or a long stemmed lighter (I prefer the lighter because of the high sides of the saucepan). Allow flame to die down.
- Once the flame has gone out, stir in butter. Remove from heat and let cool 5-10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together rum mixture with powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla.