Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Date with Bananas


There’s something really special about banana bread. No matter how many times I make it, I never get sick of making it. Nor do I get sick of eating it. And it’s such a great way to use up overripe bananas because honestly, who likes eating bananas when they’re all spotted and strongly smelling of…well…bananas? (At least I don't!)


I decided to change it up from my usual tried-and-true banana bread recipe this time around though. I had some dried dates leftover from a sticky date pudding I made a few weeks back, and thought it would be a lovely combination with the bananas. Boy, was it! After baking, the dates become incredibly gooey and just melt in your mouth when you take a bite, and works nicely with the banana flavour of the bread.

This banana bread also has whole wheat flour and wheat germ, which not only is good for you but adds some great texture to the loaf. Delicious fresh out of the oven slathered with butter for an afternoon treat, or a great energy booster first thing in the morning with your coffee!


Banana Date Bread
Adapted from Canadian Living
Makes one 9 x 5-inch loaf

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup wheat germ
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted (optional)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1/2 cup plain or vanilla-flavoured yogurt
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 large overripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir in the dates and walnuts. Set aside.

In another large bowl, whisk vegetable oil and eggs until well combined, fluffy and pale yellow in colour, about 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar and whisk to combine. Add the yogurt and mix. Add the mashed bananas and vanilla; whisk to combine.

Slowly add the dried ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overmix.

Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake in the oven for about 1 hour, or until a tester inserted into the centre of the bread comes out clean. Let cool in pan on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely.


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