So today I had this brilliant idea to use the rapidly blackening bananas sitting on my counter before they no longer resembled anything edible. I like baking with them when they get that way. They’re sweeter and make for a tastier banana bread. My grandmother taught me that. Anyway, we’re still in the throes of a heat wave so I was really vacillating about whether I wanted to start up that blazing maw that is my oven. But everything seems to be ripening almost faster than we can eat it so that was inducement enough. I dragged the fan out, turned it on full blast and got busy whipping up the bread. I blended and mixed and scooped the batter into the loaf pan, stuck it into the oven, washed up the mess and was just sitting down in front of that beautiful fan with a nice, tall glass of ice water when the power suddenly went out. Blip. Just like that.
You have GOT to be kidding! Now what am I supposed to do? I have no idea how long it’s going to be out. I imagine every house and business has been running their air conditioner on high so we’ve overloaded the system or something. Do I just leave the bread in there and take my chances? I take a peek. It’s already started rising. How long was it in there? The timer went out with the power so I have no idea. Since I started using that timer on the microwave I no longer look at the clock when I put something in the oven. I foolishly (I see now) trust the timer to do it’s job. But today it’s going to let me down. How long does it take for the oven to cool? Do I take the bread out and just wait for everything to come back on? Will it be fit to eat if I do that? I’ve seen what happens to souffles. Thank goodness this wasn’t one of those!
So…I decided to just leave it in there and eventually the power returned, I turned the oven back on, reset the timer, and let it bake. And you know what? No harm done. I finally took it out when the toothpick came out clean and it was delicious. My family ate nearly the whole thing in one evening! =)
So I can now present to you, my buckwheat banana bread.
This hearty banana bread uses the goodness of milled buckwheat (*which is a naturally gluten-free flour). Believe it or not, buckwheat is actually not a grain at all, but rather a fruit seed related to the rhubarb. It’s considered a superior source of protein compared to wheat and rice and is a rich source of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamin-E. It’s also got a lot of soluble fiber, which slows down the absorption of glucose and is known to help lower cholesterol.
One of the other nice things about this buckwheat banana bread, apart from its taste, is that it can be made for those with a variety of other sensitivities and allergies, so it is more than just gluten-free. I have given substitutions that allow this to be an egg-free, dairy-free, nut-free recipe. It’s also very low in added fat/oils, with only 2 tablespoons in the entire loaf!
And as with the desserts in the cookbook my daughter and I created, Sweet Treat and Healthy Eats, I use smaller amounts of sugar than traditional recipes, while still retaining the taste, so that you can eat this without feeling too guilty. =)
- GF flour mix - 1 cup
- buckwheat flour - 1 cup
- coconut sugar (Sucanat, organic cane sugar or honey) - ½ cup or 1/4 cup agave
- baking powder - 1 teaspoon
- baking soda - ¾ teaspoon
- sea salt - ¼ teaspoon
- ground cinnamon - 1 teaspoon
- ground nutmeg - ¼ teaspoon
- extra ripe bananas (mashed or blended) - 3
- unsweetened applesauce - ¼ cup
- almond milk, coconut milk (or another milk of your choice) - ½ cup
- 1 egg or ¼ cup egg whites or ¼ cup egg replacement* -
- virgin coconut oil or extra light tasting olive oil, grape seed oil, (or one of your choice) - 2 Tablespoons
- chopped pecans (optional) - 1 - 1 1/4 cup
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray loaf pan.
Measure and whisk all the dry ingredients in one bowl (including the nuts, if you wish to use them). In a separate bowl, blender or mixer, add the liquid ingredients (including the sugar, if using a liquid one). With a spatula or spoon, gently mix the ingredients together and pour into the loaf pan. Bake in an oven for a 55 - 60 minutes. Toothpick should come out clean. Cool on a rack before slicing. Enjoy!
Keep covered in an airtight container. This bread may be frozen, if properly sealed.
*To prevent cross contamination when purchasing your buckwheat flour, please make sure it is not milled in a facility where it may have come in contact with wheat/gluten.
**If you’re using an egg replacement, prepare it before adding it to the liquid ingredients.
An egg alternative may be made by mixing 1 Tablespoon Chia seeds or ground Flax seeds and 3 Tablespoons hot water and allowing to sit until they form a thick gel.