August 18, 2010

Skillet Banana Bread

My recent priced possession is an 8 inch cast iron skillet. It is versatile, easy to use, durable and can go from stove top into the oven within seconds. Remember, this is how our old grandmas used to cook and that's why their dishes used to taste so delicious. :) From dutch babies to souffles to breads to cakes - anything & everything can be made in this ultimate, magical gourmet tool and with such fantastic results with my first attempt, I am determined to make them all.

Below are some notes for YOU and for ME that are important to know.

To maintain a non-stick kinda surface, it is important to maintain the skillet seasoned. But, these days already pre-seasoned skillets are readily available, so one can use right-out-of-the-box. After couple of uses or so, you can re-season it again - yourself. This article on The Kitchn might help you.

A very big no-no is "Never wash a skillet in a dishwasher". Soak it in warm water and scrub a little, the little food particles stuck at the bottom will be gone. Also, never use metal to scrape the pan. Dry the pan immediately with a towel and rub lightly with olive oil to keep the surface from drying out. These little, obvious care-tips result in a longer-shelf-life of this lovely cast iron skillet. 

The best part of using a cast iron skillet is it heats very evenly, so you don't need to cook at high temperatures. Medium heat would suffice. Using two oven mitts (using both the hands!) to hold the handle is a good idea as the handle tends to get hot too. 

Don't store food in a cast iron skillet as the pan will impart a metallic taste. Cook, remove food and give it a quick-wash & dry pat. You are done. :)

Mom's Amazing Banana Bread - Adapted from "The Cast Iron Skillet Cookbook" (Pg No: 18)

Author's Notes: The cardamom gives this banana bread a surprisingly nice flavor. The skillet makes the outside of the bread golden and crisp, while the bananas and sourcream keep the inside moist. We love to toast our banana bread and spread cream cheese over the top.

Note: The original recipe was for a 12 inch skillet and makes about 8 servings. I halved the measurements to suit my 8 inch cast iron skillet.


1/4 cup butter or 1/2 stick at room temparature
1/2 cup organic cane sugar (the original recipe used granulated sugar and light brown sugar)
1 egg
1.5 bananas (overripe preferred), well mashed
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
Dash of ground allspice (which I omitted)
1/4 cup pecans and walnuts, chopped
1/8 cup sour cream

How to make:

1. Preheat oven to 300 deg F. Beat the butter, cane sugar in a large bowl until smooth and creamy, using a mixer.

2. In the same bowl, beat in the egg and then the mashed bananas and vanilla.

3. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cardamom and allspice (if using).

4. Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture (little at a time) and fold in with a spatula until well blended. Gently fold the nuts and sour cream into the batter until just blended, being careful not to overmix.

5. Lightly butter the cast iron skillet and evenly pour the batter into the skillet. Place in the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Mine was baked in 45 minutes sharp. 

6. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan. To serve you can either flip the bread out of the pan or Serve it in the skillet by slicing into wedges.

I rarely do a step-by-step recipe post (considered the fact such a lazy bum, I am). But, right from the very idea of making the bread in a skillet, I had a good feeling about it. Intuition you see. ;). and I am glad I took pictures at every step.

As Maya Angelou said -  

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how IT made you feel!! you made them feel."

P.S: Above, IT is my beloved cast iron skillet. Ok I confess, am completely smitten by it. Can't help. :)

My *real* job that pays my bills will start this week. So, you might not see me this adventurous for a while. Oh well, we never know *wink*

So, until next time,


  1. Mm what an interesting and delicious sounding idea. Thanks for the tip about not leaving it in the pan b/c I am all about storing things as lazily as possible hehe.

  2. I love cast iron pan..I know it bakes superb when I made my Jalapeno cornbread in my cast iron and Polenta Pizza with the one I have. have posted them in my blog too...But I want a deep one as I was saying..the one I have is not deep....After seeing urs its hard to resist! What the heck- i might just order one for myself now!

  3. This is really interesting and too new to me :) will try it sometime :)

  4. Thank you so much for the recipe, will try soon Siri!!

  5. I take care of my Cast Iron skillet like a baby. Mine is a grill pan and I wouldn't mind to buy this one for the price.

    Flavors in the skillet bread sounds amazing and am looking forward to more step by step recipes in future.

    And last Wishing you loads of good luck in your new job. I am sure you will shine well. Take care and Hugs.

  6. absolutely love this post!! dying to get my hands on a cast iron skillet very very soon!

  7. This is so cool, I mean the idea appeals especially when it is hot and humid and switching on the oven seems criminal.

    Wishing you the best in the new job.

  8. Love your cast iron skillet, wish had one like that. Lovely bread, good texture. Best wishes.

  9. Love this .Am dying for a cast iron skillet.Looks great Siri

  10. looks so delicious Siri..
    hugs and smiles

  11. Fabulous looking bread, just love it..

  12. Congratulations on your new job, I really love your step-by-step photos,and I hope to make this when the weather gets cool enough for me to bake again.I hope you won't mind,I'd love to guide Foodista readers to this post.Just add the foodista widget to the end of this post and it's all set, Thanks!

  13. HI,
    Most needed recipe for me!!
    Thanks for sharing it with step by step photo.
    New page is also nice.

  14. Lovely looking bread in the skillet,awesome Siri :)

  15. Love the skillet bread! looks delicious - you must bake more Sig!! :)

  16. Thank you so much gals, for your appreciation. It always feels good and.

    Miri, yes I will try to bake more from now on! :)


  17. Randomly stumbled across this today and tried it...amazing! Thank you!!!

    We just relocated...still in temp housing...have ZERO baking pans but *do* have a cast iron pan! Perfection!


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