Superstar fruit: the humble banana
If it really came down to it, I might just have to pick the banana as my favourite fruit. Sure, there are plenty more exotic fruits like mango, strawberry, papaya and dragon fruit which I get so incredibly excited about when they are in season and affordable.
However, the trusty banana is available pretty well year round and and can be made in to a one-ingredient ice cream (nicecream), replace eggs in baking, act as a natural sweetener in any dessert or, possibly best of all, be mashed and baked into a fresh loaf of banana bread.
It is this versatility in part that creates my love of bananas, along with their creamy texture and natural sweetening ablities.
Moist banana bread, with a chai-spiced twist
For all those other banana lovers out there, this is my perfected chai-spiced banana bread recipe of which I can never get enough. The added spices help twist the standard banana bread recipe to create a chai-spiced explosion. It's partially inspired by I Quit Sugar's banana bread recipe, but with a Sproutly twist.
For this recipe, you need to use bananas that are as ripe as possible (the blacker the better). Without this, bread will be lacking in that amazing banana-ey flavour and you will also probably find that it is not sweet enough, particularly since this is sugar free). When I use 3 over-ripe bananas I find that the cake is perfectly sweet and doesn't requires no sugar. Play around and taste the batter before you put your banana loaf in the oven and adjust the sweetness and spices to your liking.
A perfect, Sugar Free chai spiced banana bread
It took me a while to perfect a recipe that was oil free, sugar free, sweetener free (and gluten free and vegan as always) but I can guarantee it's is not lacking in flavour. It is ideally eaten fresh from the oven or toasted with a scoop of coconut yoghurt and some fresh strawberries or raspberries. It also works well baked as muffins (just halve the baking time). They make a perfect lunch box or on-the-go treat.
So, give this easy, no sugar banana bread recipe a go and let me know in the comments below - can you relate to my banana infatuation? What do you think is the best fruit?
Chai Spiced Banana Bread
- 3 very ripe bananas (the blacker the better!)
- 1 Tbsp tahini
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1/2 tsp clove
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup almond milk (Recipe Link)
- 1 flax egg (Recipe Link)
- 3/4 oats processed into a course flour
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- Optional: 1/4 cup maple syrup (taste the mixture for sweetness - I usually find if the bananas are ripe enough I can go without any sweeteners)
- 1 tsp coconut oil to oil cake tin
- 1 extra banana, sliced lengthways, to push into batter in the tin
Takes , serves 8.
- Preheat oven to 180˚C (350˚F).
- Process oats into a course flour using your food processor.
- Peel bananas and mash in a large bowl (leave one for topping).
- Add tahini, almond milk, flax egg, salt, spices and baking powder. Mix until well combined.
- Add oat and buckwheat flour and mix well.
- Mix through coconut and chopped pecans.
- Oil the cake tin and spoon batter inside.
- Slice the remaining banana in half lengthways.
- Smooth the top of the batter and then press each half of the banana into the mixture.
- Bake for 50 - 60 minutes until golden on top and a wooden skewer comes out clean. NOTE: If you want you can make these as muffins, just halve the baking time and omit the banana on top.