Dairy Free Banana Bread

This bread is an absolute staple in my household back in Auckland. Its super quick and easy to make, meaning that I often whip it up when I have an extra hour in the afternoon, or even quickly in the evening after dinner.

I have to admit though, its taken me a long time to nail a dairy free version of banana bread. My first attempt created a super moist and flavourful bread, my upon cutting into it, found the consistency to be far too crumbly. The next attempt was even worse, and my batter yielded rock hard bread similar consistency to that of a football. However, all trials aside, this bread seems to work a charm every time, and can be whipped up by just about anyone… in just about no time.

Not only does this recipe form perfectly as both a bread and a cake, but is also perfect for birthday or work celebrations (and those last minute freak outs when you realise you are on Cake Day at school in the morning). I usually leave it un-iced and sprinkle with a little icing sugar, but have also coated it in a melted dark chocolate drizzle for an even more decadent hit of flavour. My suggestion however, would be to leave it un-iced if using it as bread for toast or in slices.

Let me just finish by highlighting the best part about this bread… the god damn HEAVENLY smell that comes out of your oven when you bake it. Your house will literally be a bakers banana heaven, and the way that this bread rises will leave you feeling so proud in just about every other aspect in life. This is super super yummy when eaten warm, and the chocolate bits will melt throughout the bread creating chunky, chocolatey heaven in every bite.

Dairy Free Banana Bread

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup coconut or brown Sugar (packed firmly)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp boiling water
  • 3 mashed ripe bananas (the browner the better)
  • 2 tbsp maple or golden syrup
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup soy or almond milk
  • 1 1/2 cups roughly chopped dairy free chocolate (or regular chocolate chips)

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease or line a large brownie pan or loaf tin. Depending on how you like to eat your banana bread, a loaf tin will cook faster and work much better for toasting, however a larger flatter pan creates a lighter, fluffier bread for eating.

In a large bowl, combine sifted flour and sugar. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mash ripe bananas until thick and smooth, and add oil and golden syrup. Stir until well combined. In a smaller bowl, add your baking powder and sodas, and then pour in boiling water. Be careful as this will fizz, but give it a little stir in order to dissolve the powders into the liquid. Add the fizzy liquid to the bananas and stir well.

Add banana mixture to dry ingredients, then stir through the soy or almond milk only until just combined. Add chocolate chips and stir again, reserving a few to chuck on top for good looks. Do not use an electric mixer for this, as the bread will get too aerated and you will have KITCHEN EXPLOSION. Once combined, place into your prepared baking tin evenly. Bake for 20-25 minutes until a skewer comes out clean and the bread has a lovely golden top.

I like to leave this bread un-iced, especially if you are using it for toast slices or if you eat it like a loaf. However, you can easily drizzle some melted chocolate on top for an extra chocolate hit, or sift icing sugar over the top if desired.

Hint: THIS BREAD IS TO DIE FOR WHEN ITS WARM OUT OF THE OVEN. Butter it for toast or just leave it as is and ENJOY x

The Best Banana Bread

I love dense, and super soft banana bread. The banana bread that has sweet notes of caramel and maple. The banana bread that keeps you light, and still gives you energy.

Can I get an amen?

The creation of this recipe is definitely one of my most memorable. With parents away for the weekend, and after a brilliant night out dancing with one of my favourite friends, I decided to bake banana bread.

At 3am.

Alone.

In my kitchen.

Listening to ‘Dancing in the Dark’ by Bruce.

The perfect way to end a night out right?

Not only did this curb my late night sugar cravings and hunger panes from dancing endlessly (yes my moves can get radical after a few drinks), but also meant I woke up to banana bread for breakfast the next morning.

Hangover… NO! Breakfast Banana Bread… Yes

This banana bread is effortlessly smooth, with caramel and peanut butter notes. Yes I did use peanut butter in my banana bread recipe, late night baking makes me experimental ok? But in all seriousness, there was something about this time of night you that made me go the extra mile for flavour. And by that I mean, i caramelised my bananas in a pan before baking. I added nearly half a can of peanut butter. And I added chocolate. Perfection.

As a healthified version of store brought banana bread, this recipe is refined sugar free, oil free, and vegan. If you are allergic to peanuts, then simply omit the peanut butter for a different nut butter of choice. If you don’t like that sort of thing at all… Then go for more bananas and a little less liquid. You’ll know from the consistency, it should replicate a brownie batter.

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Ingredients

  • 220 grams oat flour and/or coconut flour
  • 60 grams rolled oats
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 250 mls almond milk
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar
  • 3 tsp maple syrup and/or agave syrup
  • 125 grams peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (dairy free if vegan)
  • 3 spotty bananas
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar, plus 1/4 cup for bananas

Caramel Glaze

  • 3 tbsp. peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. almond milk
  • 1 tbsp. coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Method

Pre heat your oven to 180ºC. Whisk flour, oats and baking soda in a large bowl.

Add in almond milk, white vinegar, maple syrup, peanut butter, vanilla, coconut sugar and chocolate chips. Stir briefly, just enough to incorporate the ingredients evenly. Set aside.

Add some coconut oil to a medium heat pan and add the bananas, sliced into small chunks. Sprinkle 1/4 cup coconut sugar. Cook on medium until golden.

Grease a baking pan or loaf tine with coconut oil. As an extra crispy bite, sprinkle a little extra coconut sugar onto the oil, this is essential to prevent sticking!

Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the loaf is glorious and golden. Check the middle by inserting a thin skewer and checking if it’s clean. Remove from oven and leave in tray.

Prick the top of your bread with a fork.

While banana bread is still warm, make the glaze. Combine and whisk peanut butter, almond milk, coconut sugar and vanilla in a bowl. Pour over bread while still hot.

Serve hot or cold (warmed up is best mmmmmm) and store in an airtight container.

Enjoy

A x

 

 

Hungover Eggs and Avo

I am by no means encouraging you to go out and get drunk just so you can make this recipe. In fact, if anyone did that just to eat some of my food, I would probably consider marrying them.

This is a combo that has over recent times, become a staple in my household. A classic twist on the ‘hungover fry-up’, I kept a few classics and modified a handful of items….

OK OK, I healthy-fied it.

Regardless of your feelings on a Sunday morning however, this breakfast is an easy and nutritious way to eat eggs and avocado together. Perfect for those on a student budget, anyone on a vegetarian diet, and can be made even better when avocados are on special; the only thing you will really be paying for is your precious time. But trust me here… It will not be wasted.

Easily adapted and added too, use this recipe below as a base starting point for your Sunday breaky feasts.

Ingredients

1 tsp coconut oil

4 large eggs, whisked lightly with a fork

1/2 cup milk (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste

3-4 pieces of wholegrain bread, toasted

1 batch of Avocado Smash 

Method

Heat a large pan with coconut oil over medium heat.

Crack eggs into a medium sized bowl and whisk lightly with a fork. Add in milk while whisking, and mix until all ingredients are combined. Season well.

Place bread in toaster. Toast (stating the obvious here aren’t I)

Add eggs to pan gently, letting the eggs settle for 20-30 seconds on the bottom of the pan. Carefully dragging your spatula through the middle of the eggs, separate base from the bottom of the pan and fold consistently to create a scrambled texture.

Remove immediately once eggs are cooked through, to avoid overcooking.

Top one piece of bread with eggs, and one with the 1/4 of the avocado smash mixture. Season and serve hot.

Avocado Smash

Simple yet oh so beautiful.

Yes I am talking about one mighty fine specimen…. The AVOCADO.

Unless you have been living under a rock, or haven’t been to a cafe in 10 plus years, you will no doubt have been subjected to the beauty that is avocado’s at breakfast. Avocado in any way or any form; on toast, with eggs, as a side, with bacon, on a bagel… You get the picture. You name it… Avocado has probably been paired with it.

Not that I am complaining.

This creamy and subtle fruit (yes it is a fruit, i googled it), is a new found form of wonderful and un-harmful poly and un-saturated natural fats, that play a vital role in our healthy lifestyle. Not only are they also a good form of fibre, but also are filled with vitamins such as potassium, vitamin E, and D.

But before I go any further listing the many benefits, can we just take note of the ‘scary’ thought of high calorie foods. Yes, the mighty fine avocado is reasonably high in calories. Actually everyone, it’s almost the equivalent of having a bag of chips to yourself.

So Annie… why would you subject yourself to such a high calorie food? Well its simple. Filling your body to the brim with high energy, nutrient rich foods that are beneficial to nourishing your body… That’s what health is. Filling your body with equally as high calorie foods filled with additives, preservatives, fats and unnatural sugars… That’s the opposite. Your body thrives of natural produce and doesn’t like preservatives.

Simply… Your body is going to thank you for the avocado, and maybe not so much for a bag of crisps (everything in moderation).

Below is a recipe for what I like to call avocado smash. ‘Smash’ because its not perfect. It’s fast, easy and no-fuss, but oh so full of flavours. Enjoy as a spread on wholegrain toast (my favourite), topped with chilli flakes, or simply as a dip for corn chips or sliced vegetables.

Vegan, Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Raw

 

Ingredients

2 small firm ripe avocados, stone removed, peeled

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, plus extra to garnish

Squeeze of fresh lemon juice

4 large slices rye bread

4-5 cherry tomatoes, sliced

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Chilli flakes (optional)

Feta Cheese (optional)

 

Method

Place the two avocado’s in a medium size bowl and mash roughly with a fork. Add the chopped mint (or other herbs if you so desire) and a large squeeze of lemon juice, and mash again until just combined.

Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper, adding chilli flakes for some heat if you wish. Set aside.

Toast wholegrain bread until golden, or prepare a large platter of fresh vegetable sticks and corn chips.

To serve, spoon 1/4 of the avocado mixture onto each slice of bread. Top with cherry tomatoes (and feta if using). Serve immediately garnished with extra mint.