Why Are Millennials Baking So Much Banana Bread?

By: Sam Walker

In this Economy?

Millennials across the country are desperately trying to avoid the quarantine 15 while still wanting to indulge in sweet treats. We kid ourselves by going grocery shopping every Sunday and procuring a week’s worth of fresh, healthy food we will transform into Instagram-worthy meals. After all, with all of this so-called free time we have been gifted by the lovely Ms. Quarantine, we have no excuse to use Uber eats as our only form of sustenance. 

As the week progresses and life gets in the way of crafting perfectly balanced smoothies, and salads the green bananas that once proudly hung atop our fruit bowl turn yellow, and we say we will eat one tomorrow. This cycle repeats while the bananas quietly turn brown, and one morning we are faced with the fact that we have done it again. We purchased too much produce. 

The days pass and the bananas continue to brown; we feel ashamed of our rotting bananas. Wasting food? In this economy? How self absorbed can we be? In a desperate attempt to check our egos, an idea strikes. Banana bread!! Banana bread is always better when made with bananas that should have been  discarded days ago. Not to mention, self proclaimed life coaches everywhere are bolstering our minds with the idea that we should be using this quarantine as an “opportunity” to pick up new hobbies. 

This is a ploy to keep the human mind distracted with mindless activities in a time where it may wander to what’s really going on here… Nonetheless, baking seems like a simple enough task, it will kill an hour or two of our day and the near instant gratification is enough to make us feel productive. The finished product is a tangible expression of the fact that we accomplished something today. We push the thought aside and add it to our to do list for tomorrow. Netflix is waiting. 

Thursday hits. I would imagine most banana bread bakers practice their craft on Thursdays.  At this point the bananas are just under 2 weeks old, and their deterioration looms on an exponential curve. Time is running out. Tensions are high at the virtual office, the confirmed cases ticker continues scrolling across the bottom of our television. Politicians flood the news with stay at home messages as the stock market continues to crash. We crave a sweet treat, but instead of being honest with ourselves when picking up groceries, we purchased produce in place of cookies. In the spirit of honoring our neglected cravings, we turn to instagram and find ourselves deep in the feed of a young mother of 2, who posts selfies with her cookies and lists recipes in the captions.  

A photo of her looking thin and happy, enjoying a slice of homemade banana bread catches our eye and we begin scanning the cupboard for chocolate chips. This is the perfect way to satisfy our craving, and it is healthy! After all bananas are a fruit. Duh. (These are the same people who eat an entire halo top in one sitting multiple nights a week but wont go to Kilwins with you because they are on a diet.)

I too have fallen victim to this phenomenon. 

The other day I baked banana oat muffins adorned with so many dark chocolate chips that they were basically cupcakes. I told myself that I was different and these were healthy muffins because I baked them with oat flour instead of white flour. (Secret time: you too can become a green goddess who only bakes with oat flour. Simply add your oats of choice into a blender or a food processor, and blend for around 15 seconds or until fine. (and there I go giving you a recipe…)) Why is white flour criminalized in our society? It is delicious and produces the fluffiest product. What I’m saying is eating 4 banana oat muffins is bound to leave you unsatisfied. And you are not saving calories. Eat cake once a week. Live a little. 

Regardless, I think the moral of the story here is two fold: 

  1. Be honest with yourself. Honor your sweet tooth at the grocery store. You know you don’t actually want bananas. And damn girl u deserve dessert every now and then! 
  2. Stop listening to people telling that every hour of your day has to be productive, you are not working from home. You are living in self isolation because of a novel and deadly pandemic, and trying to work through it. Set realistic expectations.

TL;DR: Be kind to yourself and stop using banana bread to justify your sweet tooth!! We all crave comfort sometimes. 

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