Bananas. Love ’em. I try to eat one every day (apples, too!).
However, there are times when our banana demand can’t keep up with our supply (I know, that’s totally backwards). It also doesn’t help that I will only eat bananas when they’re still slightly green – and won’t touch them as soon as they start to brown. When they get ripe, they are way too sweet for me.
So, we freeze the bananas if we can catch them in time, otherwise they get too ripe to comfortably eat, and we end up throwing them out. Such a bummer (and a waste).
This week was particularly bad for our banana stash. We had six, very brown bananas sitting out on our counter, and I had no idea what to do with them.
Light bulb! Banana bread (can you see a theme here?).
My mom makes a mean banana bread, so I thought about getting her recipe, but she was busy and couldn’t send it to me. Shoot.
I already have Silvana Nardone’s gluten free flour mixture all made up, and Jenee said that there was a great recipe for a bananas foster loaf cake on her website, so I figured I’d check that out as a starting point in my recipe search.
I liked her ingredients, but didn’t love the full execution of her recipe – so I did some more googling, and came across this gluten-free, paleo banana bread recipe. I liked parts of this recipe, and others, not so much… so what do I do? Combine and make my own recipe. Duh.
Bananas Foster Bake
This recipe makes one loaf of bread, cooked in a 5×9 inch bread pan.
4 Ripe Bananas
2 Tb Honey (I used my Winter White Honey from Savannah Bee Company… it tastes like Cinnabon Frosting… However, any honey will do!)
1/2 C Chopped Pecans or Walnuts (optional, but highly recommended)
1/2 C Sugar (I used 1/4 C coconut palm sugar and 1/4 C white sugar)
1 Egg + 1 Egg White
1 tsp Vanilla
1 C Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Salt
3 Tb Melted Coconut Oil (I suppose you can use another type of oil… but olive may be too strong. Grapeseed or vegetable oil might work. But, if you haven’t started using coconut oil for cooking and baking, I highly, highly recommend it.)
Preheat your oven to 325. Start off by melting 1 Tb coconut oil in a large pan on the stove. Add your honey and mix well (it won’t mix all the way since the honey and oil don’t go together). Chop your bananas and throw them into the mix, coating them in the honey mixture. Keep the heat at medium-low, and stir regularly.
Don’t worry if your mixture seems a little watery or if your bananas start to mash – they’re supposed to. They will let out some of their natural moisture and sugars, and lose their shape as they heat up. If your bananas don’t mash up as you stir them – do it yourself with a fork. Try to get as many clumps out as you can, but it won’t be a super smooth mixture.
I ended up letting my bananas sit on the stove for about 20 minutes, and I stirred them every 2-3 minutes. You don’t have to let them sit this long (I got distracted) – just keep them on the burner until the bananas have been well mashed and the mixture is warm throughout.
Add your pecans into the banana mixture a few minutes before you take them off the stove.
Next, in a large bowl, mix together your sugar, egg, egg white and vanilla.
Then, add your flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Mix until everything is nicely combined. Next, add 2 Tb of melted coconut oil and mix well.
Now, add your banana mixture, mix everything up, and pour into a nonstick (or greased) 5×9 inch bread pan. We have a nonstick pan, so we didn’t grease it first, and the loaf didn’t stick at all – to my surprise.
Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until an inserted knife comes out relatively clean. I say “relatively clean” because this is a very moist, dense loaf – I hesitate to even call it bread, hence the “bake” title. We let ours bake for 55 minutes, and the knife was mostly clean, but had a little bit of sugary stuff left on it from the bottom of the pan.
Remove the pan from the oven and immediately run a knife along the sides to loosen it up. Let it cool for 5-10 minutes, then flip the pan to remove the bake. Turn the loaf right side up and let “cool” and set for about 20 minutes before serving.
The bake is sticky on the inside when it’s still warm… but not wet or messy. You can touch it with a finger and it’ll feel sticky, but your finger will come away clean. As it cools, this goes away. It’s difficult to cut neatly when it’s still warm, but you can do it without mutilating the entire loaf, if you’re careful, with a serrated knife.
Seriously – my whole apartment smelled like bananas foster for hours. Like I said – this is a super dense and very moist bake – but it tastes like bananas foster in a bread-like form. It’s so delicious, and I can’t believe it came out right on my first try.
This bake is great warm or cold – but is best warm or toasted with butter. It’s also great any time of day (I had a bunch last night, and some for breakfast this morning…). To. Die. For.
Also, totally gluten free, and very easy to make – if I can do it… so can you. We are actually making a second loaf today with the other two bananas on our counter and a few of our frozen ones.