- 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 6 very large, ripe, bananas
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled slightly
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cups packed light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsley chopped
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
Set the oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 350°. Spray an 8.5"x4.5" loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk in the flour, backing soda, and salt. Place 5 bananas in a microwave-save bowl and cover loosely. Microwave on high about 5 minutes or until bananas are soft and have released liquid. Pour through a fine-mesh strainer into a medium bowl and allow to drain. Stir occasionally to make sure all the juice gets out. This should take about 15 minutes.
Transfer the liquid to a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat about 5 minutes or until reduced to about 1/4 cup. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir the reduced liquid into the bananas left over from the strainer. Mash with a potato strainer until smooth. Whisk in butter, eggs, brown sugar, and vanilla.
Pour the banana mixture into the flour mixture and stir until it's just combined with streaks of flour remaining. Gently fold in the walnuts then scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Slice the last banana into 1/4" thick slices. Shingle the banana slices on top of either side of the loaf, leaving a 1.5" space down the center. Sprinkle granulated sugar evenly over the loaf.
Bake about 55 to 75 minutes, then cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack for about 15 minutes, then remove the loaf from the pan to cool on the wire rack.