I've spent a lot of time with people in the food biz. Some are all about the fat and sugar - like those crazy Frenchies who developed my culinary school courseload. Others are holier-than-thou, healthy-eating zealots whose single focus hurts my head a little. I've met lots of misfits and ne'er-do-wells for whom the corporate world is just not an option. And luckily, I've met some people who walk the line straight down the middle.
I myself have wavered back and forth for years - one year buying my beloved spouse a membership to the Bacon of the Month club, and the next signing us up for gym memberships and waxing poetic about kale and cherry smoothies. I don't know quite where I am right now, which is exactly how I ended up right here, with this banana bread.
I had black bananas and no white sugar. I had brown sugar, brown rice syrup, corn syrup - just about every other kind of sugar you could imagine from my run-ins with with the healthy eating bunch, but no regular old plain white sugar. So we got to looking around on the Internet, and one of my favorite blogs - Orangette - had something I thought we could work with. Except for the white sugar bit. So I kept playing - liquid sugar here meant more dry stuff there, and we went with a vanilla bean instead of extract. No white sugar means that it's kind of healthy, right? Trace minerals found in the brown sugar and all that? Yes? No?
Whatever. At least I got to use the hammer. Every good recipe should start with a hammer.
For your information, whole nutmegs are found inside of a thin shell (mace) which is also frequently ground up and used as a spice. Here in the States you'll frequently find de-shelled nutmeg, but this fancy stuff came from my darling baby sister, a former resident of the Spice Isle - Grenada.