By Kate Shackelford
Photo courtesy of Kate Shackelford.
To further my study and understanding of the rise in banana bread popularity over quarantine, I decided one of the best research methods was to bake it myself. On Thursday, Sept. 24, I only had two virtual classes with a two and a half hour window in between: the perfect time slot. My bananas had ripened on the counter over the past several days, transforming to a light brown color with speckles scattered across their peels. Everything had fallen into place.
After listening to chapel, I went to the kitchen to get started. My recipe of choice was this simple banana bread from Bon Appétit. With a print-copy of the recipe in hand, I looked at the clock, which read 10:25 a.m., wrote down my start time and began.
The process proved to be quite easy; I had all the ingredients on hand and used few kitchen utensils. After combining the wet and dry ingredients and beating the batter, it became light and fluffy. I then folded in the embellishments: chopped walnuts and cinnamon chips. Thank you to Ms. Hogan for the recommendation! I emptied the contents of the bowl into my lined baking pan and popped it in the oven by the time the bell would have rung, signalling the end of ALAPP.
I waited. Cleanup only took me about twenty minutes, so I had some time to kill before the bread would be ready. I ended up occupying myself with various random school tasks, such as adding future meetings to my planner and the like. Time passed, and the house began to fill with the most delicious, mouth-watering aroma. It smelled sweet and fresh.
The banana bread finally tested ready at 11:50 a.m., about 50 minutes after I put it in the oven. It had risen beautifully, creating a long slit in the center. I could not resist any longer. Grabbing a knife, I sliced two generous chunks and placed them on a plate. I carried the slices to the dining room table –– my make-shift desk and locker area –– where I proceeded to log onto my F2 Meaning of Life class. Just as we began our discussion on the meaning of suffering, I put the first warm slice to my mouth, and…
It was fine, I guess. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I did like it. The cinnamon chips and walnuts complemented the flavors nicely, and the bread was light and relatively smooth. I could see how it would be classified as a comfort food. However, after all this hype and anticipation, I was expecting something more along the lines of an epiphanic, other-worldly experience. The banana bread simply didn’t deliver. It certainly did not deserve its status as the world’s quarantine food favorite.
My Final Review
Ease of preparation and cleanup- 9
Feeling of absolution after eating- 4
Overall rating- 6.6 /10
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