When it comes to no-bake methods of making desserts, the term should usually be taken with a grain of salt. While technically, you can make banana bread and the like without an oven, there is generally some heat involved, whether it involves briefly cooking ingredients together on the stove or just melting some butter in the microwave. Nitpicks hardly dull the appeal of a no-bake recipe, though. You can, in fact, transform over-ripe bananas into a moist and delicious loaf of banana bread without even preheating your oven.
Banana bread is easy to adapt into a no-bake variety because it's already such a simple sweet. Unlike other breads -- which need the dough to be risen and baked in order to produce something palatable -- "quick" breads like banana bread don't require yeast or kneading. Instead, they use chemical leavening aid in their rise. This fact makes banana bread easy to cook in both the oven and on the stovetop.
A no-bake banana bread recipe is oven-less, but some time around the stove is still required. To get started, preheat a wide pan or stock pot on the stove. The pot should be big enough that an entire loaf pan can fit inside. Once the pot is heated up, place a wire wrack in the center and your loaf pan filled with banana bread batter on top. Covert the pot with the lid and, in about 45 minutes, you will have yourself a banana treat with no oven required.
Benefits Of The No-Bake Method
Since the no-bake way to make banana bread still requires some cooking, you may wonder why it's any better than using the oven. Firstly, not everyone has an oven. Residents of smaller homes and college dorms can relate to only having a stove and a microwave at their disposal. Perhaps your oven is broken, or you might even be in the process of moving, and all you have is a hot plate. Making bread on the stove may be more convenient than it initially appears. Hot temperatures may also motivate at-home cooks to try this method -- who wants to fire up a blazing oven in the dead of summer?
Another factor is the cooking time. Banana bread in the oven typically takes over an hour to bake. If you are on a time crunch and have people to impress, making bread in a heated pan may not be a bad idea. No-bake banana bread almost cuts the cooking time in half. But while there are numerous benefits to the no-bake way of life, that isn't to say that the two versions will be exactly the same when it comes time to serve.
No-Bake Vs. Oven-Baked Banana Bread
The eternal debate between no-bake products and baked ones will always rage on. No matter how much effort you put into your creation, there is no getting around the differences between the products. No-bake cheesecakes, for instance, have a very different texture from baked ones. The dessert baked in the oven will be denser and richer, while using the no-bake method offers a lighter, mousse-like consistency. At-home cooks can expect similar differences when changing the baking method for banana bread.
Oven baking creates an atmosphere where the heat comes down on top of your bread. This differs from cooking on the stove, where the heat rises from the bottom. Made in the oven, banana bread is likely to have more of a browned and slightly crisp outer layer, while a loaf cooked on the stove will be far less browned. This factor may determine whether you use this method or not. When it comes to trying out no-bake recipes, it all comes down to taste. And taste, as we all know, is subjective. You can certainly make banana bread without an oven, but whether you enjoy it or not depends on how open-minded you are.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.