Even The Mayor, who politely asked, "How many more banana breads are we going to go through before we move on to something else?" was wowed by it. He even used an expletive.
So, what's so good about it? It must be the coconut. The macadamias are lovely too, but I think it's that rich coconut that sends it over the top. It smelled so good baking that once it came out of the oven, I just couldn't help myself and hacked off a slice immediately after unmolding it. Of course, I slathered it with Kerrygold butter, but that's beside the point -- this is the bomb. This is the ultimate banana bread. I have one more to go, but I cannot imagine it's going to get any better than this.
Banana-Coconut Bread with Macadamia Nuts
Adapted from Baking Illustrated
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/2 cup flaked, sweetened coconut
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 very ripe, soft, darkly-speckled bananas, mashed well
1/4 cup plain yogurt
2 large eggs, beaten lightly
3/4 stick butter, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan; dust with flour, tapping out the excess.
Spread the macadamia nuts and coconut on a baking sheet and toast, stirring every 2 minutes, until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, macadamia nuts and coconut together in a large bowl; set aside.
Mix the mashed bananas, yogurt, eggs, butter, and vanilla with a wooden spoon in a medium bowl. Lightly fold the banana mixture into the dry ingredients with a rubber spatula until just combined and the batter looks thick and chunky. Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
Bake until the loaf is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 minutes. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. (The bread can be wrapped with plastic wrap and stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.)