As a recent subscriber to Bon Appetit magazine, I’m loving the armchair journeys that I get to take to kitchens, dishes and places around the world. I was thumbing halfway through the March issue when I glanced at a title that said, “A Slice of Paradise.” The byline was “Twelve hours in coach for a loaf of banana bread.” It took me seconds to be transported to Maui from the comfort of my home. Once there, I discovered the magic created in so many places across the island by that humble combination of locally abundant bananas, sugar, eggs and oil.
Andrew McCarthy’s prose made me want to sample every kind available. Why were you so late writing this Andrew? We were in Maui twice and missed this local treasure. On a day long trip on the Road to Hana, Julia’s banana bread would have added that perfect start to our day.
Julia’s roadside stand sells some of the best banana bread on the island. Given that an actual meeting with Julia’s concoction may not happen for some time, I decided to pay her a virtual reality visit – I baked a loaf of her famous banana bread from the recipe provided in the article.
The bread was scrumptious. Crisp on the outside, soft flecks of banana creating a mosaic like landscape on the interior. A bread that was more indulgent and rich than the many dozens I had baked in the past.
I was not alone in my reaction to the article. A quick web search revealed a legion of travelers and bakers opining on the merits and demerits of the bread….I discovered an entire discussion thread on Tripadvisor talking about the taste differences between various types of bananas.
If you’d like to escape to McCarthy’s Maui, you can read his article here:
Julia’s Banana Best Bread recipe can be found here:
PS: The picture featured in this article is my output of Julia’s recipe:)