I’ve been under the weather the past few days and even missed my Woman Crush Wednesday cooking tutorial. The first time illness has gotten in the way of my fav day! But luckily today I had just enough energy to bake a banana loaf. And I decided to make it a “free from” variety. No sugar, eggs or dairy. Now it still has gluten, but there’s a reason why!
Apparently there is a bit of a back lash to all this “gluten free” parading around. According to an article in the Irish Times loads of money is spent to purchase said products for fear of gluten being a baddie. Well for some who are seriously ill with a condition called Coeliac Disease it is a baddie. But even a recent joke by actor Ryan Reynolds put the whole gluten gate in perspective. He said that in L.A. people are so frightened of gluten (even though the majority don’t even know what it is) that you could literally rob a liquor store with a bagel.
I am not a coeliac, nor am I a vegan. But as a chef I get requests for those foods often and quite like to eat them myself occasionally. So here’s the thing, I was actually going to make this free of everything, including gluten. However, the reality is I didn’t happen to have any gluten free flour in the house. So I used what I had on hand and literally threw this together. And the good news is when I got home from the doctor’s office today, the house smelled amazing and I got to have a nice treat with a cuppa tea! Just my luck it is International Tea Day! Why what do you have with tea but some wee cake!
I was surprised at how good it turned out to be honest with you. It is the moistest loaf bread I’ve ever made. It tasted like I was on a tropical island. A perfect balance of tart pineapple and coconut to offset the sweet banana. Heaven when the added blueberries burst in my mouth with every bite!
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) melted coconut oil
- ½ cup (120 ml) maple syrup
- 2 heaping tsp of egg substitute mixed with 2 Tbsp water as per pkg instructions (OR you can use 2 eggs)
- 2 large mashed ripe bananas
- ¼ cup (60 ml) unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1¾ cups (282g) regular flour (or you could use whole wheat or gluten free flour)
- ½ cup (45 g) desiccated coconut
- ¼ cup (66 g) crushed pineapple (or applesauce)
- ½ cup (70 g) fresh blueberries
Preheat oven to 325F/170c
Line a bread loaf tin with parchment paper
Mix melted coconut oil, maple syrup, give a stir and then add mashed bananas, almond milk, egg mixture, vanilla extract, cinnamon, ginger and set aside
Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda in another bowl. Make a well in the center and add the wet ingredients. Gently mix all together with a large spoon, until combined but don’t over mix.
Fold in the coconut and pineapple to the batter. Pour into the loaf tin.
Sprinkle the top with blueberries and gently press down.
Bake in the oven for 60 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Remove from oven and cool in the tin (on a baking rack) for 15 mins. Then remove the loaf gently from the tin by holding the sides of the parchment paper liner. Place on the rack and cool another 30 minutes before cutting into it.
Have a go at this recipe yourself and let me know what you think. But don’t go trying to rob any liquor stores with it! Meanwhile I’ll just be here eating away…..
Free to LOVE,