Flour Bakery and Cafe

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This past Easter we had all the family here in Libertyville.  Easter Sunday also happened to be my birthday, and my daughter Kristina gave me this amazing cookbook.  It truly is one of the best baking cookbooks I have ever seen.  The recipes are not fussy or difficult, and the baked goods are the very best versions of familiar and nostalgic treats.

You will find recipes for classic currant scones, sticky buns, croissants, cream-filled doughnuts, bran muffins, and so much more. Not just breakfast treats, but cookies, cakes, pies, and breads.  I could hardly put the book down when I first started reading it.  My husband Bill loves banana bread, so I decided to make “Flour’s Famous Banana Bread.”

This banana bread is hands down, one of the best I have ever tasted!  It’s so incredibly tender and flavorful.  It developed the most wonderful golden crust enveloping the entire loaf.  It cuts like a dream.  I didn’t cut it for a day, because I always let banana breads sit at room temperature wrapped in plastic wrap for 24 hours to further develop the flavor and texture.  Be sure to use really, really ripe bananas.

You cannot go wrong with this bread, or the cookbook.  If you love to bake, Flour is a must to have in kitchen!


5.0 from 2 reviews
Flour Bakery's Famous Banana Bread
  • 1-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 1-1/3 cups mashed very ripe bananas (about 3-1/2 bananas)
  • 2 Tablespoons creme fraiche or sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup walnut halves, toasted and chopped
  1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan; set aside.
  2. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; set aside.
  3. In bowl of electric mixer, beat together the sugar and eggs on medium speed for 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  4. On low speed, slowly drizzle in the oil. Don't pour it in all at once. Add the bananas, creme fraiche, and vanilla, and continue to mix on low speed just until combined.
  5. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture and the nuts until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the top.
  6. Bake for 1 hour to 1-/4 hours or until golden on top and the center springs back when you press it. (mine was ready in 1 hour). If your finger sinks when you poke the bread, it needs to bake just a little longer.
  7. Let the bread cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 30 minutes, then remove from pan and let cool completely. When cooled, wrap in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 3 days, or frozen for 3 weeks.
  8. Note: like most banana breads, they become even more moist if wrapped and let sit for 1 day. This bread is so good and really moist!



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10 Responses to Flour Bakery and Cafe

  1. May 15, 2019 at 10:26 am #

    I love all Joanne Chang’s books. All of them. She’s such a wonderful baker, and just a great person. Her banana bread is rightfully famous. She’s a gem.

    • May 15, 2019 at 11:11 am #

      Dana, how many books has she written? I’m going to have to buy them!

      • May 15, 2019 at 7:40 pm #

        Four, I think? Flour, Flour Too, Myers&Chang At Home, Baking With Less Sugar… and a book called Pastry Love coming out at the end of this year. So, soon 5. Yummmmm!

        • May 16, 2019 at 1:20 am #

          Dana, I have a feeling I will be buying all of them!

  2. May 15, 2019 at 5:11 pm #

    This is a must recipe for anyone who loves bananas, that would be me! Thanks for posting this Debbie. Your recipe picture could be in the cookbook.

    • May 16, 2019 at 1:21 am #

      You are too sweet, Marie!

  3. May 16, 2019 at 12:42 pm #

    Looks delicious. I will have to try this recipe since it is a little different than our family favorite. Did you use the creme fraiche or the sour cream? Wonderful that you had such an extra special Birthday on Easter with your family.

    • May 17, 2019 at 12:16 am #

      Kim, I used sour cream because I had it on hand. Next time I will make it with creme fraiche.

  4. May 18, 2019 at 1:19 am #

    I’ve been lucky enough to go to Flour several times. I highly recommend the sticky buns. They are classic, as is the book!!

    • May 18, 2019 at 12:29 pm #

      Yes, Michelle, you are very lucky to have been to Flour! I have heard from a few others about those sticky buns. They will be next on my list!

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