Thursday, March 20, 2014

Gluten and Nut Free Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread

Banana bread was probably the MOST sought after snack in my kitchen growing up. My sisters and I were always so excited for the day that the bananas' browning would outstrip our capacity to eat them and we could turn them into chocolate-chip banana bread. It was even better the second day, moist and soft and sweet.

I haven't had banana bread yet in my post-allergy life. In part, it probably was because I was sure no gluten free bread could compare. Happily enough, my first try produced a spectacular result.

That doesn't happen all that often with gluten free baking :)

I adapted this recipe to suit my needs. You could leave the chocolate swirl out and just add chocolate chips (and/or nuts, if you can eat them), but I think the swirl is so festive!

4 oz. chocolate (I used a whole 3.5 oz. bar of Green and Black's 70% dark chocolate)
1/2 c. melted butter
1/4 c. white sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
3 ripe medium-sized bananas (1 ¼ cups mashed)
2 eggs
1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 c. sorghum flour
1/2 c. oat (or buckwheat) flour
1/2 c. tapioca starch
2 teaspoons double acting baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350F. Chop the butter into pieces and melt in the microwave in a microwave-safe bowl or in a pot on the stove.

While the butter is cooling, chop the chocolate finely and place in a microwave-safe bowl, or a pot on the stove. Mash or puree the bananas (I chop mine into pieces and puree in my mini food processor). Combine the slightly cooled butter, bananas, and sugars in a large bowl. Beat until combined. Add eggs, vanilla, zest, and lemon juice. Beat until combined.

Whisk flours, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl. Whisk to combine thoroughly. Add to wet ingredients and mix until combined.

Melt the chocolate. Cook in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between to keep from burning. You can also melt your chocolate on the stove over very low heat, stirring constantly. Once it's melted, divide your batter in half (1 1/2 cups and 1 1/2 cups) and mix the chocolate into 1/2 the batter.

Spoon the batters into a 9.5x5.5 inch pan, alternating between chocolate and banana. Run a chopstick or knife through the batter in a swirling motion to make the swirls. Bake for 60 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.

Makes 1 loaf.

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