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Chocolate Banana Bread
  submitted by Marian Burris
Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
4 small bananas
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Topping:
1/4 cup half and half
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
6 Tbsp chocolate chips
     Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9×5 loaf pan. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and baking powder in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugars together until fluffy. Stir in eggs and bananas. Add banana mixture and chocolate chips to the flour mixture. Stir just until combined. Pour into loaf pan, bake for 50 to 60 minutes. Bread is done when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
     For the topping, in a saucepan, heat half and half and brown sugar over medium heat until brown sugar has dissolved and tiny bubbles start to form on the edges. Stir in vanilla and butter until melted. Turn off heat. Add chocolate chips but do not stir. Let sit for 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk until smooth. Cool completely, drizzle over bread.
    If you are looking for a different recipe to fix for a brunch or family breakfast, and want something different from the usual eggs or pancakes, try this recipe for German Pancake. I printed this a few years ago, but think it’s worth reprinting. This recipe includes directions for making your own syrup, which is really delicious and way better than the bottled pancake syrup. But you can skip this part if pressed for time, and use bottled syrup.  Try garnishing with a few berries if you like.
German Pancake
6 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter, melted
powdered sugar
Syrup:
1 1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup butter
2 Tbsp corn syrup
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla
     Place eggs, milk, flour and salt in a blender. Process until smooth. (or you can use an electric mixer). Pour melted butter in a 9×13 baking dish. Add batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Note: this will not bake in an even layer, that is what you want. Dust with powdered sugar.
     In a large saucepan, combine sugar, buttermilk, butter, corn syrup and baking soda. Bring to a boil. Boil for 7 minutes (watch carefully, it may boil over if you are not using a big enough pan). Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Let cool a bit before serving with pancake.
     I found this recipe in a cooking magazine years ago, and I really don’t know if it’s a “German” specialty at all. Also, if you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can make your own. Pour 1 Tbsp vinegar or lemon juice in a glass 1 cup measuring cup. Fill with milk to measure 1 cup. Stir to combine, let sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Stir again before using.
     If you have a recipe to share, please send to letscook!@heraldpubs.com or mail to Mascoutah Herald, PO Box C, Mascoutah IL 62258. Thanks and Happy Cooking!

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