It’s April 2020. You are in the depths of the pandemic: toilet paper is sold out of every store, Supalonely by Benee is trending, and upon waking up in your house with nowhere to go, you decide to make the popular treat you’ve been seeing all over social media: banana bread.
Banana bread can best be described as the “pandemic’s comfort food.” In a time of uncertainty and boredom, baking banana bread (and of course eating it all afterwards!) became a staple of many people’s routines.
During hard times, baking and desserts can often feel especially comforting. The shift from going out to restaurants, standing in crowds with no fear, and travelling on jam packed subways to being home with little outside connection was one that no one was prepared to handle. With normalcy feeling so far away, people turned to a more accessible way of feeling joyful: baking.
Baking was a savior during the pandemic for many reasons, but I think one of the biggest was because it’s very time consuming. In the heart of quarantine all we had was time. Each day seemed to drag on past the 24 hours it was allotted. Weeks poured into each other and it became difficult to distinguish when exactly you did what and on which day of the week you did it. People were constantly trying to dream up ways to keep themselves occupied. Baking is great because you must give it your complete attention and you know that in the end you’re going to get a delicious prize for your work. In a time with few responsibilities, it was nice to complete something and feel accomplished.
Baking banana bread was a simple way to feel this sense of accomplishment. If you’re culinary challenged (like me), trying complex recipes is often not in your best interest –– my deformed cupcakes can attest to that. But the process of making banana bread is simple; All it takes is mashing, mixing, and baking. The ingredients are likely to already be in your pantry and it's a great way to get rid of your overripe produce.
Banana bread also has a certain nostalgia that comes with it. For many people, It was a comfort food when they were children. Eating it during quarantine, brought back memories of more joyous times. I, myself have many fond memories of my mother baking for my siblings and I a chocolate chip banana bread. Having a slice right out of the oven with some milk and chatting with my family always made me happy as a child. Eating warm banana bread now, gives me those same warm feelings.
Additionally, banana bread is hard to get sick of. It can be made many times with different recipes. You can make banana bread with different fruits, nuts, or chocolates. You can use up all of your rotten bananas and have a huge banana bread feast for one!
At a time when it was difficult to go to the grocery store to buy fresh ingredients, banana bread was the perfect easy-to-make comfort food. It lasts awhile and is consistently delicious whether you eat it straight from the tin or reheat it in the microwave.
No, I don’t truly believe that banana bread saved the pandemic –– but I do believe that it brought much needed comfort during such a difficult time. I am glad that I got to share the warmth I got from baking this special treat with so many other people during the pandemic. It always made me happy seeing other people’s variations on the classic banana bread recipe or seeing aesthetically pleasing pictures of their final creations on social media. It’s crazy to think that something as simple as a dessert can make us all feel connected, even when we are isolated in our houses.
Even though quarantine is over, we can all still enjoy this delicious treat! Fashion Potluck has a lot of great recipes for all of your banana bread needs! Channel the early quarantine energy and engage in the nostalgia that is warm and delicious banana bread. I’ve listed some of the amazing recipes that were posted on Fashion Potluck below!