The freezer was going to pop open with the number of frozen bananas I've been storing these days. Guess what was calling my name? Banana bread! Not only was b-bread calling my name, but a therapy session was too. And baking... is my therapy. I remember when I was supposed to be studying for a test back in nutrition school, I would literally toss the books to the side with the urge to bake. I would then find myself having to stay up far too late to study! Maybe this is called "procrastination"... I like to think it's baking therapy. At least I had some b-bread to keep me company while I was up all hours studying. Ahhhh, comfort food!
Since food is medicine and I'm a nutritionista, I gotta tell you why this recipe is so good for you!
Bananas are one of the best sources of potassium (next to avocado), an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. In fact, one banana contains a whopped 467mg of potassium.
They are an exceptionally-rich source of fructooligosaccharide, a compound called a prebiotic because it nourishes probiotic (friendly) bacteria in the colon. Hello happy bowel movements.
Bananas are a source of vitamin B6 and C, manganese and have long been recognized for their antacid effects that protect against stomach ulcers and ulcer damage.
A couple other points you need to know about the delicious nutrient-dense ingredients:
1. Stone-ground flour. I used an amazingly nutrient-dense, unprocessed stone-ground flour by Wildly Canadian that I bought at the health food store. Stone-ground flour is a much gentler process than the typical spelt flour you buy at the grocery store and keeps many of the nutrients intact such as the B vitamins, vitamin E, C, good fat and fibre. There are no additives and it is unbleached, hence the beige colour which is actually the fine bran pieces that remained during the milling.
2. Organic cinnamon. I know you've probably heard me say a hundred times that cinnamon is great for blood sugar balance as proven in studies of diabetics. But not only this, it is an anti-inflammatory food and has a long history in both Eastern and Western cultures as a medicine.
Some of its reported uses are in cases of asthma, arthritis, cancer, diarrhea, fever, heart problems, insomnia, psoriasis, peptic ulcers and the common cold. Cinnamon's unique healing abilities come from three components in the essential oils found in its bark: cinnamaldehyde, cinnamyl acetate and cinnamyl alcohol. This is why is extremely important to buy organic non-irradiated cinnamon to ensure these substances do not get destroyed. I like this brand: http://www.simplyorganic.com/
I have given you options below to make this recipe vegan and allergen-free, if you prefer.
1 cup of mashed bananas (mash them with a fork)
2 organic eggs, whisked or egg-free option see below*
1/4 cup organic melted butter or organic coconut oil
1/2 cup coconut sugar (or 4-5 liquid drops of stevia) If you use chocolate chips, use the lesser amount of sugar
1 and 1/4 cups of stone-ground spelt flour
3/4 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
1 tsp organic ground cinnamon
1/2 cup sunflower seeds or chopped walnuts
1/3 cup of organic chocolate chips
Method: Combine banana, sugar, eggs and melted butter in a bowl. In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients. Mix both batches of ingredients together and stir well. Grease a medium size loaf pan and pour mixture into it. Bake at 350F degrees for 50 minutes.
*2 tbsp chia in 6 tbsp water. Let sit for a few minutes to become pudding-like.
Cool for about 10 minutes before you remove it from the pan. It tastes amazing with some raw honey or almond butter.
This banana bread is full of fibre, complex carbohydrates (the good guys that keep your blood sugar balanced), protein from the sunflower seeds and it is going to make your tastebuds VERY joyous. It only lasted a few days in my place because the banana-bread-eating-monster must have come out of hiding.
Have a beautiful joyous day,