Every once in a while I get a creative urge to re-create my favorite recipes in a paleo friendly way. Preferably baked goods, because I’m a much better baker (ok, let’s cut the crap- I was having a craving for baked goods. Shocking). This weekend, I attempted to re-create my mom’s winning 4-H banana bread recipe from the 1960’s. The dry ingredients were a simple swap from flour to coconut flour, and sugar to coconut sugar. Others were left the same: eggs, organic super ripe bananas. Easy right?
Here was my problem: the key feature (according to mom it CANNOT be substituted) is shortening, that is whipped to a fluffy texture. You don’t have to be a genius to know that shortening is a NO-to the-GO for paleo. That said, I scoured my kitchen cabinets for something that could work as a substitute, and finally decided on coconut oil. After following the recipe, I ended up with a damp sand-like mixture that looked like couscous, nothing like what the batter normally looked like. At that point, I started adding almond milk to help liquefy the mixture. It took nearly 1.5 hours at 350 degrees to cook all the way through, and was still slightly crumbly, but tasted amazing. However, we all know if it doesn’t look cute, it does not win.
See for yourselves:
Not cute. Or appetizing. FAIL.
Back to the drawing board I went. I tried it again with less of the dry ingredients, and added some almond butter this time. Much better.
Behold: the finished product!
Not Your Mother’s Blue Ribbon Banana Bread
2 large organic bananas mashed, sightly brown/spotted (roughly 1 1/4 cup of mashed bananas)
2 eggs, beat well
1/2 cup of almond butter
1/2 cup of coconut flour
2 TBSP of coconut oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp of baking soda
2/3 cup of coconut sugar
1/2 tsp of sea salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Sift dry ingredients. Beat eggs separately. Beat coconut oil and coconut sugar with all remaining wet ingredients. Add pre-beaten eggs; beat mixture well. Add flour mixture ALTERNATELY with wet mixture. Beat until smooth after each addition.
Line the bottom of your loaf pan with wax paper (lightly spritzed with coconut oil spray), trust me. Otherwise you end up with a broken hot mess of a loaf. Bake in greased loaf pan or standard size cupcake pan for 60 minutes at 350 degrees.
Makes one loaf, or 6 cupcakes, pick your poison.
Obv, you can leave it in longer if needed, or less, just do the toothpick or knife test to make sure it cooked all the way though.