I've been playing around with my Texas Pecan Banana Bread recipe thinking I might try to make it a little healthier. I'm not quite sure if I did or not, but it sure is darn good! It's just a little surprise today for Mr. Garden when he comes home after a long day in this Texas heat.
I first decided to add a bit of organic applesauce to help replace some of the butter. I think the applesauce is great in it...but really? Nothing can replace real butter! So I think next time I make this I will amp the butter back up to the normal amount. At least I know it can be done successfully and you can use your own preference.
Sugar is my true nemesis, especially the white refined sugars. I've worked hard at avoiding them in everything I prepare these days. A bonus for today's baking experiment was a beautiful jar of unprocessed local honey. Who can resist this kind of honey when one loves to bake?
Spicing things up some with fresh ground cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg and some homemade vanilla extract made the whole experience pop with that warm and cozy feeling. These things really add so much to anything applesauce. Hope you enjoy!
Preheat oven 325 degrees.
1 1/3 cup unbleached bread flour
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. freshly ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter (softened)
1/2 cup organic raw pure cane sugar
1/2 cup pure honey
1/4 cup organic applesauce
2 large well ripened mashed bananas
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup crushed nuts (walnuts or pecans)
Measure out all of the dry ingredients and whisk together really good. (Except the nuts) Save them for last. Set bowl aside.
Next, mash the bananas and measure out all of the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Blend on medium with your mixer until well combined.
Add all the blended wet ingredients to the whisked dry ingredients. Mix on medium low speed until well combined. Stir in the nuts.
Pour batter into a bread loaf pan lined with parchment paper.
Bake on 325 for 60 to 75 minutes. Check frequently after the first 60 minutes by testing with a toothpick. When it comes out clean it is finished.
Take it out of the oven and let cool. Not all the way though if you want to eat a warm slice like I did. The parchment paper allows you to lift the bread up out of the pan easily and keeps the pan clean too!
Happy Gardening and Baking Too!