1 cup butter or margarine, room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 very ripe bananas, mashed (preferably overripe)*
2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced into quarters and tossed in 2 tablespoons flour**
* To ripen bananas, allow green or yellow bananas to ripen at room temperature until the skin is covered with brown spots.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two (2) 9x5-inch loaf pans.
In a large bowl, cream butter or margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; stir until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in bananas.
Reserve ¼ cup of sliced fresh strawberries and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, add sliced strawberries and sprinkle with flour on top. Gently toss the strawberries in the flour (this will prevent the color and juices from bleeding into the bread while baking).
Gently fold in the strawberries into the banana batter. Pour the batter into the prepared bread pans filling about 3/4 full (as bread will rise during baking). Sprinkle tops of each loaf with the reserved strawberry slices.
NOTE: Bake all quick breads as soon as the ingredients are assembled. Since high temperatures are often called for, it is best to bake them in the center of the oven, as the heat in the top third of the oven will be too intense.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake 55 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. NOTE: Be sure and poke the toothpick to the center of the loaf. A good check is to use an instant digital thermometer to test your bread. The internal temperature of the bread should be at 200 degrees F. when done.
This is the type of cooking and meat thermometer that I prefer and use in my cooking. I get many readers asking what cooking/meat thermometer that I prefer and use in my cooking and baking. I, personally, use the Thermapen Thermometer shown in the photo on the right. To learn more about this excellent thermometer and to also purchase one (if you desire), just click on the underlined: Thermapen Thermometer.
Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack 10 minutes; remove from pan. Cool completely before slicing.
Storage: Breads that contain fruit, nuts, or butter may be stored for 2 or 3 days, well wrapped in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. May be frozen for longer storage. After thawing frozen breads, reheat them in a 400 degree F. oven for a few minutes before serving.
Makes 2 loaves.