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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Chocolate Banana Bread






















Sugar Free Chocolate Banana Bread
4 large ripe bananas, a little overripe is fine for this. Mine were just edging into "banana bread" only stage.
1 egg
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup Splenda
2 Tbsp vanilla extract (your mileage may vary, but I like a lot of vanilla)
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp. baking soda

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 cup flour -I used Bob's Red Mill whole wheat pastry flour

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Mash up bananas well with a wooden spoon. You don't have to be too picky, you can see banana chunks in mine. Mix in butter, Splenda, egg, vanilla and mix it to a really disgusting gloppy looking mess.Stir in baking soda and salt, then mix in the dry ingredients. Cocoa first to get it well mixed in, then the flour.
Pour into greased loaf pan.It will just fill a greased loaf pan to 2/3rd full or thereabouts.
Bake for 1 hour. Let rest for about 10 minutes, and turn out.

With Sugar Chocolate Banana Bread-
4 large ripe bananas (same, overripe is fine)
1 egg
1/3 cup vegetable oil (I used canola, you could use melted butter. It might make it too rich though)
3/4 cup sugar- any kind, I used white because it was convenient. I think if I were using maple or brown I'd use 3/4 plus 1 Tbsp.
2 Tbsp vanilla extract (your mileage may vary, but I like a lot of vanilla)
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp. baking soda

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 cup flour I used my old standby organic white unbleached (also Bob's Red Mill)


Preheat oven to 350°F.
Mash up bananas well with a wooden spoon. You don't have to be too picky, you can see banana chunks in mine. Mix in oil, sugar, egg, vanilla and mix it to a really disgusting gloppy looking mess. Stir in baking soda and salt, then mix in the dry ingredients. Cocoa first to get it well mixed in, then the flour.
Pour into greased loaf pan. It will just fill a greased loaf pan to 2/3rd full or thereabouts.
Bake for 1 hour.
Let set for 10 minutes or until the teenager in the house figures out something just came out of the oven and comes into the kitchen sniffing and looking like you've starved her for weeks. Or maybe that just happens here?

Your cake may turn out lighter in color if you use white flour. I think since the leavening is baking soda no gluten flours will be fine.

The differences- I used more sweetener for the sugar-free version because coming up with sugar free icings is difficult. I love that you can bake with Splenda, but there just aren't good replacements for powdered sugar, and a lot of icing recipes depend on the crystalline structure of sugar, so instead of making an icing for it, I just gave it to my Uncle with a tub of whipped cream cheese. I also used a bit more chocolate, because Splenda dissolves a lot more throughly than sugar does in this recipe, and the liquid could handle more chocolate. I used butter instead of oil for the extra richness and to help mask the slightly off taste of the Splenda.
The sugar version was a HUGE hit in our house, and the sugar free version was a hit with my Uncle, who didn't look like he felt bad at all while we ate cake. After all, we had to share the cake, and he had a loaf of banana chocolate-y goodness all to himself.

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