So I have this reusable plastic cup I use every morning at work to make iced coffee. It's got colorful swirly-doos on the sides, an orange plastic lid and even a reusable matching orange straw.
And one morning last week, I'm just minding my own business, about to make iced coffee when I realized I needed to run a quick errand. So I placed my clean empty cup on a table in the office kitchen, ran an errand for about 10 minutes and came back to the kitchen. I went to my cup on the table and, hold on to your seats America, SOMEONE STOLE MY STRAW. The perp kindly left my cup and lid but took my orange straw.
First of all, ew. Let's be real, what kind of functioning member of society is comfortable with stealing and using a complete stranger's reusable straw? I could be diseased, for all they know (the doctor said it's not contagious though). Heck, I sometimes get grossed out by the thought of using the same plastic straw everyday and it's my own germs!
Having seen more Law and Order SVU than any person should ever see, I used my knowledge to begin my investigation. I actually liken my approach to that of a drug-sniffing dog more than that of Benson and Stabler but I had to go with my instincts. I decided to focus my vision only on the color orange and begin scouring the office.
I was ready for an uphill battle. I didn't care if it took all day, I was determined to find my straw that was probably valued at about 50 cents. I stepped a foot outside the kitchen and, oh, wait, there it is. Sitting on a coworker's desk. Just sittin' there. My stolen straw. And what did I do? I didn't say a word. I felt bad about possibly embarrassing the thief. I didn't want to offend them by suggesting they stole my orange straw which I know they did with absolute certainty. What I'm saying is, I have mental issues. Obviously, I don't want to use the straw again. That's gross. I think I may steal it back just to throw it away. Again, mental issues.
As you can guess, this has nothing to do with Strawberry Banana Bread. I just needed to get that off my chest and you, dear reader, had no choice but the read it. You're welcome.
Ok back to baked goods. Let's talk about strawberries, bananas, brown butter and sugar. Yeah. 'Nuff said.
Here's the recipe!
6 oz unsalted butter, melted and browned, totaling about 1/2 cup (instructions to brown butter below)
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk
about 3 medium bananas, mashed
1/2 cup diced strawberries (plus 1 strawberry thinly sliced for the top)
3/4 cup sliced almonds
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
2. In a large pot, melt butter over medium-low heat. It will melt, then foam, then turn clear-ish golden, and then begin to brown. I begin swirling the pot when the foaming ends and keep a close eye on the bits that form at the bottom of the pan. The butter should begin to take on a nutty aroma and the bits settling at the bottom will turn brown. When you notice this, immediately take the butter off the heat and set aside to cool.
3. In a large bowl whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk wet ingredients: bananas, eggs, vanilla extract, buttermilk, cooled browned butter and mashed bananas.
5. Add wet ingredients to dry. Combine completely and be sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl to catch any dry flour. Fold in diced strawberries, almonds and chocolate chips. Do not overmix.
6. Pour batter into prepared pan and top with sliced strawberries. Bake for 50 mins to 1 hr, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to rest on a wire rack for 15 minutes before removing from the pan and cooling completely on the rack.
7. Slice and enjoy!
Recipe adapted slightly from Joy the Baker