Chocolate Caramel Banana Bread

Banana Bread will forever be a staple in my kitchen. Because for whatever reason, I always think its a wonderful idea to buy bunches of bananas at the supermarket. Every time I think, "this time will be different. I will eat all of these bananas." I want to be the kind of person who will eat all of those bananas. I am not. Every time, without fail, I let them sit on the counter and ripen to a fragrant, mushy, deep chocolate brown. Maybe I subconsciously do this on purpose. I do really love banana bread. Its great with a cup of tea or coffee for breakfast or an afternoon snack, its great with a scoop of ice cream as a dessert. In my opinion, if you add walnuts to your banana bread it is eligible to be considered for lunch or dinner. 

This particular banana bread is better suited for the scoop of ice ream, dessert route. It makes a great banana bread sundae. But it would be completely within bounds to eliminate the caramel and add walnuts instead for a more traditional banana bread.

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Chocolate Caramel Banana Bread

2 Cups. All Purpose Flour

1 tsp. Baking Soda

4 Very Ripe Bananas

3 Large Eggs

1 Cup Sugar

1/2 Cup Melted Butter

1/2 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

2 C. Chocolate Chips 

1 Cup Stiff Caramel Sauce (Recipe Below)

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine flour and baking soda in a small bowl and set aside.

In another small bowl mash the bananas. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and melted butter. Add the eggs one at a time and whisk after each addition. Add the salt and vanilla. 

Whisk the mashed banana into the wet ingredients.

Add the flour and stir until combined. 

Add the chocolate chips and stir until they are evenly distributed.

Grease and line two loaf pans with parchment paper. 

Pour about 1/4 of the batter into each of the pans. 

Spoon the caramel onto the top of the batter. I did about six spoonfuls on each, evenly spaced out.

Pour the rest of the batter into the pans on top of the caramel. It's like a caramel sandwich. 

Sprinkle the top generously with sugar.

Bake for 30-45 minutes, until the top is crispy and hard and a toothpick comes out clean when you poke the center of a loaf.

Let cool. Eat.

Caramel Sauce

1 Cup Sugar

1/4 Cup Water

1/4 Cup Butter

1/2  Cup Cream

In a medium CLEAN pot, combine the sugar and water. Place the pot over high heat. Let the mixture bubble and boil. DO NOT STIR, or the mixture will crystalize. You don't want that. 

While the sugar is heating, put the cream in a small saucepan and heat until scalding (until bubbles start to form around the edge.) 

The sugar should cook until it is the color of amber. Once it is the proper color, remove it from the heat and add the cream. The mixture will bubble like crazy at this point. Thus, the medium pot. Once the bubbling calms down, you can stir the butter in.

The mixture should look smooth. 

Let it cool completely before using.