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January 23, 2015

There’s No Place Like Home-Made Banana Bread. {Recipe}

Wilfredor/Wikimedia Commons

It all started with a simple text asking what flavor he preferred. I had a date for Sunday night: sitting elbow to elbow with the head of a rowing team and watching Turner Classic Movies on the big screen. The movie? The Wizard of Oz.

Watching Judy Garland fall asleep amidst a field of opiate-laden poppies never seemed so appealing.

The text was innocuous: “Do you prefer sweet or salty? And do you like spicy? And if you do, indeed, like spicy, do you like it more than your sweet/salty preference?”

My need to delve into my date’s taste buds was rooted purely in the nature of the excitement of getting-to-know-you expedition. The curiosity and inquiry that comes with what, exactly, you like placed on your tongue?

I had planned on running to Whole Foods on my way to the movie theater, hoping to find some savory and satisfying snacks on the way: maybe some sun-flower seed oil baked pea sticks, some sprouted, stone-ground corn Sriracha chips, or “Mountain Berry” spinach-berry-apple-sweet potato strips.

You know, the goods.

Also, asking about his food preferences and waltzing into Whole Foods with text-instructions in hand would involve less guesswork (i.e., stress) for me, which means, I could go into the date at optimum-shine level. I had planned on gliding into the movie theater like Glinda the Good Witch, sparkles and wand in hand. This type of gliding usually involves being in a low-stress environment before-hand (my cortisol levels must be close to non-existent, otherwise, gliding becomes more like “stumble, stumble fall” and all of a sudden I’m in the Rocky Horror Picture show and not skipping down the yellow brick road).

He responded a few hours later: “As long as it’s made with love, I’m good.” Though delicious, I wasn’t entirely sure that pea sticks from Whole Foods screamed “made with love,” even if they are “Snap-pea!” they’re still made in a factory. And something about assembly-line food and packaging just doesn’t scream love to me; even if I hand it to him while dripping in glitter.

All of a sudden, I was the one with the ruby slippers on my feet, hair thrown back in a braid, chasing Toto down the dusty plains of Kansas, while we were both simultaneously being chased by the Wicked Witch of the West. She had a broom, but I had the slippers.

It’s funny, what love does.

To the blender and the oven! Quick, before the tornado hits! It’s raining coconut palm sugar! Is that hail made of shredded coconut? Watch out! It looks like a can of garbanzo beans is coming your way! Throw in those two over-ripe bananas, they’ll protect you, Dorothy!

And indeed, they did.

In a matter of minutes I had concocted a stormy, yet smooth, love-filled batter of delight, that would make any flying monkey succumb to a primal need for a piece of cake and filled with a sweetness that would scare any Wicked ol’ Witch away. And I didn’t even need Glinda to do it.

Dorothy may get to the Emerald city, after-all, and her little dog, too!

The recipe for this Snappy (but not Snap-pea!) Banana Cake-Bread is as follows:

  • 1 tbsp of coconut oil (for pan)
  • 1 can of organic garbanzo beans
  • 2 organic ripe (or over-ripe) bananas
  • a little more than a ½ cup of water
  • 3 heaping teaspoons of organic coconut palm sugar
  • 3 tbsp organic, unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp of hazelnut extract (optional)
  • 1 tbsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of cardamom
  • ½ cup blueberries (to place on top)

Use a tbsp of coconut oil to oil a small, mini loaf bread pan (the size you would use for a small loaf of banana bread), and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Place the garbanzo beans in a blender, along with a little more than a ½ cup of filtered water. Begin to blend the beans with the water, and stop and stir with a spoon if needed. Add in two ripe, or over-ripe, organic bananas into the mixture. Continue to blend. Next, add in the organic coconut sugar.

Taste the recipe at this point, and check to see if it is sweet enough. If not, add in a bit more of the palm sugar.

Next, add in the unsweetened coconut. You may add in more if you like your banana-bread with more coconut essence. If you do, I would also suggest adding in almonds to complement the coconut.

Check to see if you need more water. At this point the consistency should be batter-like; if it is not, carefully add in water in appropriate intervals (i.e. ¼ cup) at a time.

Add in the vanilla extracts (and the hazelnut, if you prefer).

Finally, sprinkle in the cinnamon and cardamom. Continue to blend in the blender until smooth.

Pour the batter into the oiled bread pan and then place the blueberries, or experiment with the fauna of Oz and consider a different type of fruit.

Mixing in maca powder would skip this recipe straight down the yellow brick road to the Emerald City, and you might also consider mixing in chia seeds or hazelnuts (to complement the extract).

Bake in the oven at 350 degrees F. Check on the bread after 30-40 minutes, and keep watch on it afterwards. It bakes a little quicker than traditional bread, and may take less time than you expect. Just keep clicking your heels together and your finished bread will appear in no time, ready to present to the Wizard, and maybe, even: Snap! Wake Dorothy up from Oz.

Because, where there’s fresh food made by hand, there’s love.

And where there’s love, there’s home.

And there’s no place like home.

Love elephant and want to go steady?

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Author: Lizzie Kramer

Assistant Editor: Kathryn Muyskens/Editor: Travis May

Photo: Wilfredor/Wikimedia Commons, Simply Recipies

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