I write a food column twice a month for the New Jersey Herald. I showcase everyday recipes that are a little out of the ordinary but, easy to prepare. My article this week featured an updated version of a family favorite banana bread recipe. I hope you enjoy my article.
An infatuation with food began early in my life. Anything culinary intrigued me. My free time was spent whipping up batches of chocolate chip cookies with my sisters, grilling hotdogs for lunch with my best friend, watching Julia Child on The French Chef during my lunch breaks from grade school, and accompanying my Dad on his bi-monthly grocery shopping trips.
I was given many liberties when it came to cooking in the kitchen as a kid. I experimented with baking spongey mini madeleine cakes, rice crispy bars slathered with a peanutty chocolate topping, and endless batches of creamy rice pudding using my Mom’s favorite recipe.
A one bowl banana bread recipe was one of the first sweet treats I prepared as a young chef. Only one bowl, a couple measuring spoons and cups, and a large spoon were needed to whip up the banana flecked quick bread. Traditional pantry staple baking ingredients of all-purpose white flour, granulated white sugar, and butter were the base of the baked good. Perfectly overripe bananas were always available in our family freezer.
Flash forward to modern times and my days are spent cooking for personal chef clients. Nights and weekends find me in my kitchen updating cherished family recipes. Whole Grain Banana Raspberry Bread with Flax Meal is an updated take on the banana bread I made as a child. A few modifications elevate the usual tried-and-true sweet fruit bread to a scrumptious and wholesome baked good.
Finely ground and nutrient deficient all-purpose white flour is replaced with heartier and more nutritious whole wheat flour and ground flax meal. The amount of sugar was decreased and replaced with the less saccharine and rich tasting brown sugar. Coconut oil stands in for the butter adding a hint of coconut flavor. A generous amount of fresh raspberries add a tart compliment to the sweet bananas as well as a dose of vitamin C.
Tweaking family favorite recipes allows me to add new dishes to my cooking repertoire. A slice of Whole Grain Banana Raspberry Bread with Flax Meal awakens memories of the banana bread I originally baked so many years ago.
- 1 ¾ cup white whole wheat flour
- ½ cup ground flax meal
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 2 extra large eggs, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 large bananas, mashed
- 1 ½ cups raspberries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the white whole wheat flour, ground flax meal, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and brown sugar.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the coconut oil, eggs, vanilla, and bananas.
- Stir the banana mixture into the flour until almost combined; some of the flour should still be visible. Gently stir in the raspberries trying not to mash them up and until the batter is just combined.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
- Bake for 55 – 65 minutes or until a long wooden skewer comes out clean after being inserted into the middle of the loaf.
- Let cool on a baking rack for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and remove the loaf from the pan. Let cool on baking rack.
© 2017 amycaseycooks