I’ve been craving some comfort foods. Fried chicken. Mashed sweet potatoes. And banana bread. Who doesn’t love banana bread? One of the things I’ve been mourning since I went gluten free has been stuff like pancakes, muffins and quick breads. For one, they are usually full of sugar. Two, full of gluten. Three, really not the basis of a great diet. But I like them from time to time, as a once in a while food, and I was missing them. I recently found this great gluten-free all purpose flour product from Pamela’s.
It’s got rice and potato starch in it, and tapioca, so if you’re NO carbs/NO starch/NO grain then it’s absolutely not going to work for you. But I like rice, and I am ok with very occasional potato and tapioca starch, and carbs are not my enemy. I like this stuff just fine. It works as a flour substitute 1:1. It’s a little crumblier in the finish, than regular flour, but that’s not uncommon with gluten free. So far I’ve found it to be the closest thing to flour-based in my finished recipes. The pancake recipe on the back of the package is stellar (I use 1/2 coconut milk/1/2 water instead of soy, but I think otherwise I just make the recipe as written) and really like being able to enjoy the occasional lazy morning with pancakes again. I hadn’t baked with it until today, though. Upon discovering some bananas slowly melting on the counter, I decided to try the Pamela’s mix in a recipe from one of my normal, pre-Paleo cookbooks. I didn’t have a banana bread recipe, so I adapted the Harvest Pumpkin quick bread recipe from Cole’s Cooking A-Z (pg. 491). My version of the recipe follows. For the leavening, there are two amounts given. The first is as normal and if you live not-in-the-mountains, then use that. The second amount (in parenthesis) is for high altitude baking. We live at 5000 feet. It makes baking trickier. The original recipe calls for a mix of brown sugar and granulated sugar. I substituted coconut sugar, which works 1:1 in your recipes. You can find it at Sprouts, Whole Foods, on Amazon, or at any health food store. Ditto the Pamela’s mixes.
2 c. Pamela’s All Purpose Gluten Free Baking Mix
2 tsp. baking powder (1 1/2 tsp)
1/4 tsp. baking soda (1/8 plus a pinch)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. each: ground ginger, cloves, salt
3/4 c. coconut sugar
3 bananas, super ripe
1/2 cup golden raisins, soaked in 1/2 c. boiling water.
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. butter (grass fed)
Preheat oven to 350, and grease your bread loaf pan. I have a challah pan so I used that, but any normal sized loaf pan should do. Give it a spray with some coconut cooking spray (Trader Joe’s makes a good one) so it doesn’t stick.
In a large bowl, sift together your Pamela’s baking mix, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, other spices and coconut sugar.
In another bowl, you want to take your beaten eggs, vanilla and your bananas and mash them together really well, till it’s a thick and not too lumpy consistency. Add your melted butter, and then add this mixture to the dry mixture. Stir well and then pour your raisins and the water they soaked in, into the bowl and mix more. You might find you need to add a little more water to this – I find the Pamela’s usually benefits from some added liquid and I generally prefer to eyeball it until it looks about right to me as I’m mixing rather than stick to absolute amounts.
Pour this into your loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes. Test for doneness.
Cool 15 minutes, or until you can’t wait anymore, then slice it up and eat it with pats of melting butter. It’s best to enjoy next to your best guy and some cats. There’s no picture because we ate it too fast.