Thursday, February 5, 2015


When I was growing up in southeast Arkansas, we had two television stations we could watch. One of them was KNOE-TV Channel 8 in Monroe, LA which went on the air in September, 1953. Back then it broadcast shows from all of the networks. In the 60s and 70s, Mildred G. Swift hosted a 30 - minute cooking show that aired after the local news. I can remember watching it as a teenager. 

When we went back to southeast AR and northeast LA for Thanksgiving, one of the things I did while there visiting with my cousin Carol, a.k.a. Sissy, was go through her mother, my Auntie's things to see if there were things I would like to have. After putting aside some fabrics and quilting books, I almost missed seeing her cookbooks. 

One of the first cookbooks I saw was Looking at Cooking and Garden Jobs with Mildred Swift KNOE Home Economist from 1963. I was so excited when she confirmed that she didn't want it and I could have it. Some of the recipes are hers and others are from home economists throughout the U.S. that sent them to her. Some were from viewers. When she could give credit for the recipe, she did.

Mrs. Mae Stone was given credit for this recipe for Banana Nut Bread. My bananas weren't real ripe as the recipe called for, but my result was very good. The only change I made was using 1/2  cup of sugar/stevia blend for the 1 cup of sugar. I did use margarine since the recipe said "butter or margarine". She didn't say how long to cook the loaf, just "bake...until bread shrinks from side of pan." 

I made the recipe last week for Sterling when he was here helping me with my unfinished remodeling job. I made one big long loaf. The next time he came back he told me he had toasted and buttered a slice and thought it was good. But his wife Cassie had taken it to her son's wrestling match and that it was dry tasting. I thanked him and told him I wouldn't share it on my blog, if Cassie said it wasn't good.

I think the reason it was dry was that I cooked it too long. I made it again yesterday afternoon and made 3 mini loaves. I cooked them 40 minutes or so (the shiny pans took a couple of extra minutes). I decided to check them with a toothpick in the middle.

I wrapped two of the loaves in foil to freeze (if my husband doesn't want to take them to the Fort), but I cut the other one while it was still warm. I just knew that Mildred Swift would not have included a recipe that wasn't good. And I was right. It was hard not to cut a second slice. I will have to make Sterling another loaf so Cassie can see how good it is.


3        large bananas (very ripe)  (a little over 1 cup)
1/2     cup butter or margarine (I did use margarine)
1         cup sugar (I used 1/2 cup stevia/sugar blend)
2        eggs
2        cups flour
pinch of baking soda
2        teaspoons baking powder
1         cup chopped nuts (I used pecans)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease 3 mini loaf pans. (I used Pan Grease from an earlier post. Best discovery ever!)

Mash bananas to a pulp.

Cream the butter in a large mixing bowl. (until light and creamy)

Add the sugar to the butter and beat to blend well.

Add the eggs and bananas to the creamed mixture.

Combine the flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a bowl with a whisk.

Add to the mixture. (I added the flour mixture in parts.)

Add the nuts.

Divide batter evenly between the 3 loaf pans.

Bake for 40 minutes or so. Check doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of the loaf. (If you are making one loaf, I would suggest checking it out after 50 minutes with a toothpick if it is nice and brown and springs back when gently pressed in the center.)

Cool loaves in pans for about 5 minutes before removing.

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