Saturday, June 6, 2009

Banana Bread

In my pre-allergy baking days, my banana bread was legendary. Really. It was often requested for gatherings, and I never had leftovers to take home. Family get togethers, work pot-lucks, teachers lounge treats, you name it. I have given out the recipe many many times. It is that good.

It is also totally not mine. It is from a cookbook that I inherited when I got married. 'Cincinnati Reds Home Plate Favorites'. From Buddy Bell we have Base-Hit Banana Nut Bread. And it scores every time I make it.

After our allergy diagnosis I adapted the recipe to be egg and dairy free, and we still enjoyed it. When we got rid of wheat I thought, naw. Too many adaptations, it couldn't possibly be good. I still make the original recipe to take out to different places. I trust that it is still good. It tastes funny to me now, having been off of such decadent baked goods for so long.

Anyway, after my daughter asked- again- why I always make banana bread for everyone else but not for us....I knew it was time. Time to stop searching for a good recipe and just try this one out. Adaptations and all.

And it worked! It was moist (what gluten free baked good isn't?), and flavorful, and gone by the end of the day. My kids had it for breakfast, and two snacks. Um, and me too. Baked goods are my weakness.

My husband? The ever picky baked goods critic? Not so much. He said the flavor is good, but it's still too gummy. So, feel free to tweak it. Let me know if you get a drier version. I'm OK letting him eat toast. He never has adapted to allergen free baked goods.

I'm good with that. More for me.

Beyond the Bases Banana Bread

1/2 c Earth Balance buttery spread- soy free version (or use Spectrum shortening)*
3/4 c packed organic brown sugar
3/4 c organic cane sugar
2 EnerG eggs, whisked until foamy with warm water
2 tsp bourbon vanilla
1 c mashed banana*
1/2 c sorghum flour
1/2 c millet flour
1/2 c brown rice flour
1/2 c tapioca starch
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 c unsweetened coconut milk + 1/2 tsp white vinegar (for buttermilk)

Cream butter or shortening (or blend thereof) in mixer bowl. Add sugars gradually, beating until light and fluffy. Add EnerG eggs and vanilla and blend well. Fold in mashed bananas. Whisk together dry ingredients in separate bowl. Add alternately with coconut milk mixture, mixing well after each addition. Pour into greased bundt pan and bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove to wire rack to finish cooling. Dust with powdered sugar (as you see above) or serve naked. Good both ways.

*Cook's notes:
  • We have not had butter in the house until about a week ago when we found the soy free Earth Balance. My allergic kiddo doesn't like overwhelming butter flavor after being off it so long, so I used a combination of butter and Spectrum shortening. A little more than half butter.
  • The banana is one of my secret ingredients. No slightly over ripe bananas here. The blacker the better. They should fall out of the peel when you open them up. Just shy of moldy. trust me, it gives a really intense flavor to your breads and muffins.
  • If you can have nuts, toss in 1/2 tsp of almond flavoring in place of 1/2 tsp vanilla. It's the other secret ingredient in this recipe, but I always omit it since we are avoiding nuts. Makes a huge difference in the flavor though. While you're at it, throw in some pecans too! Yum.


  1. Thanks so much for the awesome banana bread recipe! My husband's co-workers who can eat whatever they want raved about it! One said it was the best banana bread she'd ever had. I do think it has a little too much sugar though. I think I'll make it with only 3/4 c. total when I make it for my family but may increase it to take out to people who aren't used to the taste of gluten free flours.

  2. I'm so glad you liked it! And yes, it is a bit sweet. I often reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup of each. For taking out I always use the full amount because it seems that the general public prefers things very sweet.


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