2 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup sugar
¾ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup unsalted butter
2 large eggs, room temperature
¼ cup sour cream, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla or rum extract
1½ cups very ripe bananas (3 large or 4 medium)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 5-by-9-inch loaf pan; coat only bottom if nonstick.
In large bowl, thoroughly whisk flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In medium Pyrex measure or heat proof bowl, soften butter in microwave at 10-second intervals just until almost melted. Stir until no solids remain and butter is not separated. Add eggs one at a time, whisking after each addition. Whisk in sour cream and flavoring just until combined.
In shallow bowl or pie plate, mash bananas with fork until mixture appears creamy with small lumps. Do not over mix or puree fruit. Measure to 1½ cups. Add bananas to butter/egg mixture and stir gently to combine.
Pour banana mixture into dry ingredients and gently stir by hand with spatula or large spoon just until flour looks almost absorbed. Do not use a whisk or electric beater. Gently scrape bowl from bottom to top about 3 to 4 turns to completely incorporate dry ingredients. Batter will be thick and lumpy: do NOT mix until smooth.
Gently spoon into pan and smooth top. Bake 55-60 minutes until deep golden brown, crack appears on top and tester inserted at center just comes out clean.
Cool 15 minutes in pan before turning out to cool on rack. For best flavor and texture, serve after cooling 1 to 2 hours.
Baker's hint: Substitute plain or Greek-style yogurt for the sour cream.
Nutrition values per serving: 241 calories; 10 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 35 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 4 g protein, 58 mg cholesterol, 184 mg sodium.