Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Banana Bread (with only 1/2 cup brown sugar)

In case you're like me and you don't always read to the bottom of things, I just want to start by saying that this banana bread comes out of the oven on the moist side.  It tastes a lot better if you let it sit out over night.  Actually, we just let this sit out on the counter uncovered the whole time and it did really great that way.  In other words, I don't recommend wrapping this up or putting it in a bag. 

Banana Bread (with cauliflower)
from Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Sienfeld

Makes a 9 by 5 inch loaf or 2 mini loaves

-Nonstick cooking spray
-3/4 c whole wheat flour
-1/2 c all purpose flour
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/4 teaspoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
-1/2 c firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
-1/4 c canola or vegetable oil
-2 large egg whites
-1 1/2 c banana puree
-1/2 c cauliflower puree
-1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Coat a 9 by 5 inch loaf pan, or two mini loaf pans, with cooking spray.
2.) In a bowl or zipper-lock bag, mix the flours with the baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon, if using.  Set aside.
3.) In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar and oil with a wooden spoon until well combined.  Mix in the egg whites, banana and cauliflower purees, and vanilla.  Add the flour mixture and mix just until combined.
4.) Pour the batter into the loaf pan.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes for the large loaf, 25 to 30 minutes for the mini loaves.  Let cool on a rack for 5 minutes , then turn the bread out of the pan before serving.

Okay, I know what you're thinking.  Cauliflower puree?  But trust me, it's good.  And the easiest way to prepare for this recipe is to buy a head of cauliflower (Is that what it's called?  A "head?"), cut it up into florets (the little bushy parts), and steam the florets for 8 to 10 minutes.  Once it's done steaming, put it in a food processor (or something that will get a really good, smooth puree) and puree for about 2 minutes.  (Add a few teaspoons of water if you need to in order for your puree to be smooth.)  Then just measure out 1/2 cup or 1/4 cup portions into zipper bags and freeze.  Doing that once in a blue moon makes this recipe much more user friendly.

And while we were borrowing our neighbors' food processor the other day I went ahead and pureed the bananas (no steaming needed) and split it up into 1 1/2 portion bags so that now I can make banana bread anytime I want and don't always have to let a bunch of bananas ripen on my counter for a few days before. 

I know this sounds all more complicated than it's worth, but I promise it's really not bad at all once you just do it.  If anyone gives this recipe a try I'd love for you to let us know how you like it in the comments section!  Bryan and I really enjoyed it (after it set out overnight).  I had a couple of slices with a glass of milk every night for a week or so and it was a very nice, satisfying little dessert.


Marae Lindsey said...

yum. do you know how to cook cauliflower without stinking up the place? at my last apartment i had to wait until my roommates were out of town to make it...

Katie said...

I thought it smelled good. Although Bryan mentioned that it smelled funny when he walked in.

Aubrie said...

Thanks - I will try response to the "smell". I think that is why it's a good idea to buy the veggies on sale and make a large batch of puree to freeze for later :).

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