Easter is a family celebration, so when compiling the festive menu, focus on simple recipes and those that can be made in advance. This will give you the opportunity to spend more time with your loved ones hunting for eggs and enjoying delicious food in the backyard instead of cooking in the kitchen.
Why Make Banana Bread on Easter?
If you decide to follow this ‘rule’, banana bread is sure to be a part of the repertoire. Why? Well, there are many reasons. First and the most obvious one is that this quick bread is the best way to use overripe bananas.
Second, banana bread recipes are so easy and simple to make, it’s almost ridiculous. Each recipe will take you no more than 15 minutes to throw together, the rest of the job is done by the oven. Moreover, knowing a few simple banana bread hacks will easily turn you into a banana bread master, famous for producing the softest and moistest loaves on the planet!
Third, banana bread recipes allow for experimenting with ingredients and methods of preparation, thus giving you an opportunity to ‘adjust’ your loaf to any occasion. For instance, we will suggest how to turn this simple loaf into an attractive Easter delight.
Fourth, banana bread can be eaten any time of the day – breakfast, brunch, snack or even a dessert. All it takes is just a small twist in the recipe.
And last but not the least, banana bread is the best way to welcome back eggs and dairy after the long period of Lent!
Banana Bread for Easter Brunch
Bread has always been part of various religious ceremonies. For Christians, it symbolizes renewal and is associated with Christ’s resurrection and the Last Supper, when Christ shared bread with the disciples. Easter breads are often made in symbolic shapes or with special ingredients like currants and raisins or with decorated Easter eggs on top.
Hot Cross Buns are probably the most popular Easter bread variety. These spiced tea cakes are made with currants or raisins and a cross on top to represent the crucifixion. They also call for spices that are supposed to represent the ones used to embalm Christ’s body before the burial. Hot cross buns are usually served on Good Friday. Another popular bread alternative is Placek, a sweet yeast bread with golden raisins, topped with sugar crumble.
To honor these traditional Easter bread recipes, prepare a raisin banana bread by simply adding a cup of raisins to the batter. Raisins work perfectly with nuts, especially walnuts and spices like cinnamon and nutmeg. Alternatively, you can combine them with peanut flavor, by adding 1/3 cup of peanut butter (in that case, reduce the amount of regular butter in the recipe) and replacing the chopped walnuts with chopped roasted peanuts.
When it comes to toppings for this loaf, there are two options. To resemble Placek, top it with a crunchy cinnamon sugar.
To make a hot cross buns copycat, let the loaf cool off and cut it into squares. Make icing by combining powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla, then X on the top of each square.
Alternatively, you can add red coloring into the batter to make red velvet banana bread batter. It is suitable for the occasion because it will symbolize Christ’s blood. Decorate as the hot cross buns.
Serve your loaves along with a jug of warm milk, butter on the side, and decorated eggs. Your brunch is ready!
Banana Bread as a Dessert
Banana Bread Simnel Cake Copycat
There is no negotiating about whether there is going to be a cake on the Easter table. When it comes to traditional Easter cakes, Simnel cake is the first that comes to mind. This light cake is made with layers of marzipan and almond paste, as well as fruit. It is usually decorated with twelve marzipan balls to symbolize the apostles and eaten in England and Ireland during the Easter period.
To recreate the Simnel cake, include 1.5 o.z grated marzipan, a cup of apricot jam and a cup of chopped almonds into the batter. You can replace almond paste with any topping you like, from whipped cream to chocolate spread, but don’t forget the twelve marzipan balls!
Bundt Banana Bread Cake
Another option is to make a Bundt cake with your banana bread batter. If you decide to go with this option, I recommend dividing the batter into two batches and including cocoa powder in one of them in order to obtain a marbled effect. However, the ‘wow’ moment is in the decoration. Bundt cakes are perfect for playing the role of nests so, fill the center with chocolate eggs and voila; you’ve got yourself an amazing centerpiece for your festive table.
M&M Banana Bread
Infuse your banana bread with chocolate chips and sprinkle the top with a handful of pastel colored Easter M&M’s before baking. Super-easy and very effective!
Banana Bread Muffins
Making a double dosage of the banana bread batter will prove very smart because you can use half of it to make easy- peasy Easter muffins! Simply pour the batter into muffin tins and bake for about 15-20 minutes. Now, muffins are a perfect addition to holiday tables because they are very easy to decorate.
Here is a quick example: Make a frosting by microwaving 3oz. of broken milk chocolate (white or brown) for about a minute or so. In a bowl, beat together 5oz. of butter and 5oz. of powdered sugar, then add the melted chocolate. Spread on your dessert and decorate with Maltesers, chocolate bunnies, chocolate eggs, or colorful M&M’s. Arrange in small baskets for presentation.
Banana Bread Easter Gifts
If you are hosting an Easter brunch or dinner for a larger group of friends and family, prepare mini banana loaves. This is convenient because any leftover breads can be quickly packed into transparent foil, tied with a ribbon, and included in previously prepared baskets filled with Chocolate rabbits, chicks, and eggs.