Mon. Jul 15th, 2024

Can you bake banana bread on your dashboard: Enthusiasts put it to the test

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Jul5,2024

>> The dashboard is extremely hot in the summer/fabrikasimf

Welcome to summer. Or, as those of us who are forced to live like this for the rest of our lives call it – Hell. But as they say, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

And by lemonade, we mean banana bread, which you can probably bake right on your car dashboard if you live in the right place. Saguaro National Park rangers made the announcement on their Facebook page.

Located in southern Arizona, Saguaro National Park is named after the giant saguaro cactus, which can reach nearly 40 feet in height. As you can imagine, it's very hot here: in June and July, the average temperature exceeds 37 degrees Celsius, and during five months of the year – 32 degrees Celsius. Obviously, it's getting even hotter inside the car – probably enough to bake.

To show, how quickly a car can literally become an oven, the rangers filled two muffin tins with chocolate chip banana batter. They then left the loaves on the dashboard of the car on a day when the temperature was 36 degrees at 11:00 a.m. and left them there until at least 2:00 p.m. The temperature on the instrument panel reached 93 degrees within an hour, and 99 degrees three hours later. This is only one degree less than the boiling point of water; you could definitely boil an egg there in no time.

As for the banana bread, the rangers said it was a little “mushy” on the inside after all this time, which makes sense. The recommended baking temperature is usually above 176 degrees, as this is the temperature at which the Maillard reaction occurs, which causes browning and complex flavor development. You can cook below this temperature, or even below the boiling point of water (that's sous vide for you), but it won't be as good. For best results, you'll probably have to leave the banana bread in there all day. Or you can take the rangers' advice and bake cookies instead. They're thinner, so they bake faster and more evenly.

However, as sweet a treat as sun-baked cookies are, let it will also serve as an example of what can happen to things you leave in your car in the summer. If you don't want it to be cooked over a slow fire, like in a pot, take it home with you – you can no longer rely on the “dog mode”.

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my 1-800-268-7116

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