Monday, September 13, 2010
Banana Bread for the Sweet Tooth
As mentioned, I decided to make a loaf of banana, coconut, and chocolate chip bread yesterday. This included a bunch of items I had sitting in my kitchen, such as an opened can of coconut milk, a can of baby food, and some shredded coconut (which I'm not a big fan of and rarely use). The baby food jar had been sitting in the back of my cupboard for ages, and since it was plain banana-mango puree, I used it as a substitute for the mashed banana. As I'm still lacking a loaf pan, I had to bake this in muffin forms again - but they turned out quite good. :)

Without further talk, to the recipe...

Banana Coconut Chocolate Chip Bread
  • 2/3 c coconut milk
  • 1 c mashed banana
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 c spelt flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c unrefined sugar
  • 1/2 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c shredded coconut
Preheat oven to 175 C (350 F).

Combine coconut milk, banana and vanilla in a bowl. In a separate bowl (or if you're lazy like me, in a sifter ;)), mix together the dry ingredients. Sift the dry mixture into the wet, and mix until smooth. Fold in the chocolate chips and shredded coconut.

Pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan, and bake in the lower-middle part of the oven for 45 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

This produces a very sweet banana bread, which is not my personal favorite, but was loved by the ones who ate this. ;) If I was making this for myself, I would probably substitute chopped pineapple for the chocolate chips (piña colada banana bread?!) - or use some other fruit - to get in some fresh taste.  Some chopped nuts would be a nice addition, too.

For dinner, I made another easy favorite. As I had an opened can of coconut milk, I turned it into an easy Thai curry. I just fry a couple of tablespoons yellow* curry paste in the coconut milk for a few minutes, then add some veggies (I used a small head of broccoli, a couple of carrots, a tiny piece of leek, a few button mushrooms, half a bell pepper, small piece leftover Napa cabbage, handful of green beans - and two potatoes, chopped and pre-cooked in the microwave for 5-10 minutes). Once the vegetables are tender, you can add a little lime juice, a pinch of sugar or apple juice, and some soy sauce. I also like to add some chickpeas, beans or tofu to get in a little protein, and sprinkle a few cashew nuts on top. This is one of the easiest meals I know, and you can make it even faster by using frozen or canned vegetables. Depending on your curry paste, you may not need any extra salt or other spices - but if you wish, add some ginger, lemon grass, and garlic as well.

*I use a yellow curry paste from a Thai grocery store. This brand is very flavorful by itself, and doesn't require any additional spices. When buying curry paste, you should check the ingredient list carefully: I have found that yellow curry paste is usually vegan, but many of the red and green varieties contain shrimp, fish sauce, or anchovies. This is specially true to curry pastes found in the ethnic/Thai groceries; I have found that most supermarkets do carry red and green curry pastes that are vegan.

I was so hungry I forgot to take a picture of the meal, but I leave you with a picture of the black rice we served this with. I love black rice - probably more than any other type of rice - but it's quite difficult to find here, specially the organic variety. This week, I found it in one of the stores for about 15 kr ($2.5), so I obviously stocked up. ;) Black rice has a deep, nutty taste, and is even chewier than brown rice - which I lke. It turns into a lovely color when cooked, and is a fun addition to a meal. Black rice - also known as the forbidden rice - is not only nice to look at, but packed with nutritients. The dark purple color is due to a high anthocyanin content; new research seems to indicate that black rice has an even higher amount of it than blueberries.

There's just one thing I wonder. Since anthocyanins are supposed to improve your night vision, with all the bilberries, blueberries and Aronia berries I eat, and supplemented by black rice as well - shouldn't I have a vision like a cat?! ;)
posted by Seglare at Monday, September 13, 2010 | Permalink |


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