Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Some yummy (and somewhat healthier) banana bread...

With my husband back home this week (after his spending time at his mother's last week) I'm back to cooking like it matters. Yeah, I know it matters all the time, but when I get some time alone I live like I don't really believe that.

Anyway...

Knowing hubs would enjoy some banana bread, I decided today was the day to bake like it matters.

While I normally use some amount of whole wheat flour when making most baked goods these days, I can never remember if I should use hard or soft whole wheat flour in something like banana bread, so I googled it.  When I did, this recipe popped up (from Heavenly Homemakers).

I'm not a big fan of honey, in general, but I was intrigued that the recipe above only calls for 1/3 cup of  honey instead of the 1 cup of sugar the recipe I normally use calls for.   Honey and sugar have a similar Glycemic Index, but if I'm only using a third of cup of honey that's a significantly lower GI overall for this recipe than my normal one, so I figured it was a recipe worth trying.



It was significantly less sweet than what we're accustomed to, but both DH and I thought it tasted good.  Not dessert good (which my regular banana bread is), but for a healthy alternative?  Yeah!  It was okay.

Okay enough that I decided to make a second loaf.  But when I got out my cell phone (where I had originally pulled up the recipe) I had somehow lost the page.  And I couldn't find it again no matter what I looked up (forgetting what I had googled when I found the recipe).

BUT...  googling "banana bread with whole wheat flour and honey, I came across this Healthy Banana Bread recipe and even though it called for coconut oil rather than butter, and it had cinnamon and water, and it didn't have baking powder, I decided it was close enough.  

I made the second recipe, waited for it to bake then cool enough to remove from the pan for a taste test.  Even with the cinnamon in it, it pretty much tasted like the first loaf I had made.  (Edited to add...  tonight, hubs said it tasted "apple-y".  I think it was the cinnamon he was tasting and apple-y was the best he could come up with to describe it.)  It was a bit moister (than the first recipe) - even though I cooked it a tad long and it browned a bit too much on the bottom.  




But, still...  it held the same "Yeah!  It's okay" appeal.  And since (at the time) the second recipe was still on my phone I decided to print that one out to keep.

And that's when I realized I had forgotten to add vanilla.  It's also worth noting I substituted 1/4 cup of sour milk for hot water.   And I used some unbleached flour from my cupboard in place of a bit of the whole wheat flour.  I used a cup or more of walnuts ('cuz I always add more nuts than any recipe calls for), and I added some ground flax seed (probably close to 1/4 cup).

About this time, I also remembered what the search terms were I used when I found the first recipe above (which is why I can link to it here, and I have since printed that one out, too).

Honestly, the above recipes are both keepers, in my opinion.  I'm going to experiment with using olive oil instead of coconut oil, and next time I make it I'm going to actually measure the ground flax seed and walnuts.  If I manage to do all that so that I'm confident of my adaptations, I'll type it up and share it. 

Meanwhile,  if you're open to trying a not-very-sweet banana bread, I highly recommend the two recipes linked to above with a slight preference for the second one.   







Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst..."   John 6:35



9 comments:

  1. Banana bread! My go to. Thank you for the recipes and ideas. I always add in things like nuts and golden raisins to mine, being a fan of inclusions. I do like the idea of less sugar and subbing honey. I use whole-wheat for mine.

    It sounds as if yours is less like cake and more like bread, as it is supposed to be! Off to test your recipes now.

    PS: I sometimes add in a few chocolate bits..dark chocolate, says she virtuously.

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    1. Both breads I made are still crumbly like a quick bread tends to be - than say, like a yeast bread. Texture-wise, it seems pretty identical to my sweeter version. It's just that the sweetness level is significantly lower. I could get on board with making one of the above quick breads a go-to bread - even to accompany a meal. The recipe I've used for years has too much sugar and oil in it for me to consider making and eating it very often. I imagine raisins would be terrific in this bread. Maybe even blueberries??? Hmmmm... you've got my wheels turning!

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  2. I tried one with rice flour and was impressed that it turned out. I have another recipe that uses spelt flour but both are very high in the Glycemic index. I have been trying to sub honey or Coconut Palm Sugar for white sugar in all recipes. Coconut palm sugar does not spike blood sugar like refined does. (Per our nutritionist) We had to get used to the fact coconut palm sugar is brown and therefore some baked goods would be a different color because of it.

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    1. So many things you've mentioned that I've never tried. Some I haven't heard of - like coconut palm sugar. I will look into that! Thanks, Marsha.

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  3. Well, when I make banana bread it definitely is more like dessert. The one thing about my bread is that is more like Walnut Bread with bananas. I don't even measure the walnut, I just had hand fulls. I love nuts in my bread. Yours looked great.

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    1. The more nuts, the merrier is usually my thinking. :)

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  4. They both sound delicious. I just threw some "bad" bananas in the freezer yesterday. I may have to defrost them. I was going to try a recipe my daughter told me about; banana bread with chocolate chips, and nuts of course!

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    1. Banana bread with chocolate chips sounds like a nice treat. =)

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  5. mmmm - now I'm hungry for banana bread! Resident Chef often puts chocolate chips and coconut in ours.

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