Banana-Nut Bread

I remember banana bread being the rage – it was offered at a lot of cafes and coffee shops, at the bakers’, and the grocery stores …. now there’s a lot more selection.  They were all pretty gross – unpalatable, if you ask me.  They were mostly dry, and I barely tasted any banana flavour.  It was like having particle board with my tea/coffee!

So, the hunt was on for a prize-winning banana bread.  I don’t recall where this recipe came from, I believe when I got it, an old newspaper or magazine?  Anyhow, I HAD to change it.  It was a five-ingredient recipe – boring!  It’s been years since I’ve had this recipe, could be when I was a teenager who gathered up recipes as others were gathering things for a hope chest – my hope chest was “hope for open culinary expression!”

This is a very coveted recipe, one that was given out only to family and very dear friends.  Why the change of heart, you ask?  Well, giving is much more rewarding than receiving.  And I promised I would share them once I started my blog ….. and here we are :).

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I’m going to share a bit with you.  Because I took time to research and source out recipes and all things food-related, I used to resent sharing my recipes, only to have someone say “I made it” when she brought it to others’ dinner parties.  Then, she’d get all the praise!  Isn’t this similar to plagiarism?  Re-writing what someone else wrote and taking the credit for it?  My friend once asked me for my fave chocolate chip cookie recipe.  I was torn because she is not the domestic type, and I didn’t think she was worthy of receiving it.  Yes, seriously!  I remember toiling over this – will it be “yes” or “no”?  I ended up giving her another recipe, one I just pulled out of my collection, and told her that I wasn’t going to give out this recipe that I spent time perfecting over and over again, and that she would be getting a similar one.  At least I told her I was doing it and not merely pretending it was “THE” recipe she was requesting.

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You may have heard this before – “Why does it matter if you give someone a treasured recipe?  It doesn’t mean she will be able to follow it, and it doesn’t mean it will turn out the same as yours.”  I thought long and hard about this one.  Much to my chagrin, it does make sense. OK, on with the recipe.  This recipe has half the sugar than traditional banana breads.  Very ripe bananas with brown speckles are the best, as the starch has turned to sugar (thus very little sugar is required) – I have cut this down dramatically.  Very ripe bananas also lend to breads being more tender.

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Ingredients:

1 c. mashed banana (3 large or 4 small)
1/2 c. sugar (I use organic coconut palm sugar)
3/4 c. (heaping) vanilla yogurt
1/4 c. butter, melted (I use coconut oil)
1 t. vanilla extract
1 T. wheat germ (optional) – I use hemp hearts
2 eggs (or 6 egg whites)
2 c. flour – I use 1 c. a/p and 1 c. wh/wht or 1 c. spelt (the denser the flour, the drier the bread, i.e. if using all wh/wh, spelt, etc., use 1 c. yogurt)
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/4 c. chopped pecans (I use sliced almonds – must toast – toast them with the hemp hearts)

Method:

Preheat oven to 350F. Combine first seven ingredients into a mixer bowl and beat until well combined.  Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups and level with a knife.  Combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt; stir in pecans. Add flour mixture to banana mixture, stirring just until moist.  Spoon batter into a loaf pan coated with butter and flour (I use coconut oil, no flour).

Bake for one hour and cool on wire rack.

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With blueberries:  Use only 2 large bananas and add 1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries.

Notes:

I like to double the recipe, as one loaf is never enough.  I love my stoneware, and yes, I have two stone loaf pans and bake together, leaving at least one pan-width distance between the two.

The denser the flour you choose to work with, remember to up the wet ingredients.  I usually add more yogurt.  Keep experimenting.

 

 

 

 

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This entry was posted by Lillian on Thursday, November 7th, 2013 at 5:58 am and is filed under Baking, Breads, Recipes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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