Monday, February 13, 2012

Whole Wheat Banana Bread

I know, I know. Another banana bread recipe. 

I'm sorry. It's just that lately I'm a woman obsessed. I wake up dreaming about fresh pineapples and banana bread.  And not necessarily in that order. I've tried to appease my cravings for the latter but so far it hadn't worked as far as finding a whole-wheat version was concerned. So I've been compiling a list of recipes to try out and, needless to say, we are going through plenty of loaves of banana bread at my house. Isn't there something so comforting about waking up to the homey fragrance of baked bananas on a winter morning? 

I think I have finally found a one-bowl recipe that is moist & delicious enough that you might want to leave your bananas to blacken on the kitchen counter just so you can try it out. I've made a couple of minor adjustments to this  recipe that I stumbled across on the King Arthur Flour website. Also, I baked mine as muffins instead of a loaf quite simply because its a less crumbly option for the kids' lunch boxes. The chopped dates are a last-minute addition because I wanted to sneak in some extra iron and fiber and also because I have at least a few kilos on hand and quite simply have no idea what to do with them. Any suggestions?

(Note: I've made this recipe several times over with great success substituting both canola oil and coconut oil for the butter. It works very well with both & I no longer make it with butter).

Whole Wheat Banana Bread
(adapted from King Arthur Flour)
Serves 18

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
a pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 cups mashed, very ripe bananas (I used 3 large)
1/4 cup honey
2 large eggs
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup roughly chopped toasted almonds
1/2 cup chopped dates

Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a muffin tin with 2.5" baking cups. 

Beat together the butter and sugar till smooth. Add in the vanilla, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and bananas. Beat till smooth. 

Beat in the honey and eggs. Stir in the flour, nuts and dates (I dusted my dates with half a tsp of flour so they wouldn't clump together). Spoon into lined muffin tray and let rest at room temperature, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Bake 30 minutes. 

Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before turning muffins on to a rack to cool completely before serving. 

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Nutella Hot Chocolate

Something warm and toasty for your winter mornings. In honor of World Nutella Day.

I've eliminated such things from my diet but that's no reason to stop inflicting my cravings upon my kids. So, if you don't mind, we're going to curl up here in our little corner of the world with some Nutella Hot Chocolate. 

Nutella Hot Chocolate

1 cup milk
2 tbsp Nutella
1 heaped teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
a good pinch of sea salt

Combine everything together in a saucepan over medium-low heat & stir until combined and warmed through. How easy is that!

World Nutella Day started in 2007 as the Brainchild of Sara of Ms. Adventures in Italy and Michelle of Bleeding Espresso. Don't forget to check out the Nutella Day Flickr Pool or the Nutella Day Facebook Page for lots of inspiring posts by bloggers from around the world. Happy Drooling!


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