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With Banana Nut Bread Recipe to warm you up!!

I tell you, these Floridian Kids are so spoiled to wear shorts, T-shirts and sneakers just about all year round.  I can relate as I am in flip-flops 365 days a year. So today was an unusually cold morning when it was time to take my children (4 year old son and 21 month old daughter) to school. I informed my son on the way out the door that he would be wearing his “heavy coat” today, he instantly got upset. Our rule is that he doesn’t have to wear his coat to or in the car but has to put it on when we get to school. Upon arriving to school and putting his coat on the tears began to flow. I hurried the 3 of us through the gate and into the MMO room to drop my daughter off while he was mumbling under his breath the entire way in. After getting inside, I squatted down to eye level to clarify what was wrong. He informed me that he was going to fall down while playing outside with his friends and when I asked why, his simple response. “my coat is heavy“, I had to laugh. - Moving forward, needless to say, we will be referring to coats by their color!

I am married to my best friend who has blessed me by giving birth to 2 beautiful children that have forever changed my life and we are expecting another girl this summer. I am a very involved father and love every minute of it. I am in the restaurant business and professionally trained cook who is  very  passionate about food. I am flattered and excited that Lara has asked me to contribute to The Growing Tree blog and share some my favorite recipes that I prepare for my family and friends.

On this cold day here is a great recipe to warm up the family for breakfast, for an afternoon snack or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert.

Banana Nut Bread (makes 1 loaf):

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature, plus more for pan
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed very ripe bananas
1/2 cup sour cream *this is the secret ingredient that sets it apart from the rest!
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or pecans)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan; set aside. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, and beat to incorporate.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture, and mix until just combined. Add bananas, sour cream, and vanilla; mix to combine. Stir in nuts, and pour into prepared pan.
3. Bake until a cake tester or tooth pick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Let rest in pan for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto a rack to cool.
4. I hope you enjoy!

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