What to do with three ripe bananas

Favorite banana bread recipe - Mary Lee writes
I just pitched three over-ripe bananas into the trash. The significance of this? My husband, John, loved my banana bread, and he would eat bananas until there were three left on the kitchen counter. I soon understood the signal, would let them ripen an extra day and make the banana bread. I experimented with cinnamon and other spices to make it more tasty, but he always said, “When you have something good, why change it?” I made the same recipe for over fifty years, always with pecans.

Junior League of Memphis cookbook | Mary Lee writesIt was with a pang that I put the bananas in the garbage. Life changes, and we move on. Memories can bring tears and then a smile of gratitude for the memory. Like my saying, “It’s just out of the oven, want a piece while it’s hot?” I remember that he always thanked me, as if I had done something really special for him.

The recipe is out of the Junior League of Memphis Cookbook, originally published in 1952. Mine is so worn that I have no cover or introductory pages. The banana bread is credited to a Mr. Walter L. Berry.



1/4 lb. butter
1 c sugar
2 eggs
1/2 c pecans, finely chopped
2 c flour
1 tsp. soda
3 very ripe bananas, crushed
Whip bananas until light. Cream butter and sugar and add eggs. Sift flour and soda. Add to butter and eggs. Combine this mixture with the finely chopped pecans, then add crushed bananas. Pour into greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Yield: 1 loaf.


The banana bread is quite moist and not very sweet. Try it toasted with a little butter at breakfast, though John never wanted it any way but plain. I like to toast the pecans, and I don’t crush the bananas separately. I put them into the batter and let the mixer do my work.

My son, John, asked me when I started this blog what I planned to write about, and I told him I had no idea! And that’s the way it is developing – so bear with me, readers. I will keep you guessing, that I can guarantee.