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I was recently asked about how dark, how ripe should the bananas be when using in baking recipe? Should they be all brown, almost black? And, do I puree them first?
This how to baking technique is used with the Classic Banana Bread Recipe Tutorial.
HOW TO TIPS:
The bananas I used were less than 8-inches long, each, with their peels.
Did you know that when mashed, three bananas at this size equals a little over 1 1/2 cups?
SARAH SAYS: For baking, I like to use bananas that start to get covered with brown flecks; I find they work best for baking. It's because it has a higher pectin content than one that is riper. Pectin is an indigestible soluble fiber which, when combined with water, forms a colloidal system and gels, which helps baked good bake with a better structure. In other words, I have found that the less pectin a banana has, the more apt the recipe will sink in the middle. But, everyone has their own opinion as to what degree of ripeness is the best.
I mashed them with a fork for a few seconds - just enough so they would fit into a dry cup measuring cup so I could measure the pulp.
SARAH SAYS: That's the only reason for mashing them! The mixer blades will further mash them, so you do not want to overdo it at first!
Here is one cup dry measuring cup, with the pulp leveled to its rim. Push the pulp into the measuring cup with a rubber spatula. All you want to do is get as accurate a measurement as possible for the recipe!