A few nights ago while doing homework and sipping hot tea, I admitted to myself how much I would like to have a chocolate chip cookie. Unfortunately, I admitted to myself that I would also like to pass chemistry. Hence, as finals loom just two weeks away, I have severely limited free time to be making cookies. To compromise between my conflicting desires, I threw together the batter as quickly and efficiently as possible with the ingredients that I had on hand. I settled for eating the dough instead of trekking down to the kitchen to actually bake it, allowing for sufficient time remaining to finish studying, brush my teeth, and get seven (maybe six and a half) hours of shut-eye. In my frantic rush to satiate my sanity and my to-do list, I would never have guessed how good this batch of cookies would turn out.
A sad group of stolen cafeteria bananas lingered on the top of our fridge the other day. They kept staring at me as I busied about the room, cleaning up laundry and making my bed. One minute they had been perfectly yellow beauties, with no spots to speak of, and now they were mushy and brown (thanks to our good friend ethylene…I am so glad that the plant physiology unit in my biology class has come to a close. Now we are dissecting fetal pigs, so don’t plan on seeing any pork recipes on the blog anytime soon).
Gross bananas have two main uses: smoothies and bread. It is still a bit too cold to be thinking about smoothies, so I decided to play with a recipe from My New Roots. I had to improvise on several levels due to lack of ingredients; thank goodness for the versatility of this simple yet comforting loaf.
I had to part from the heavenly smell of the bread to go to track practice; this was probably a good thing because it forced me to let the loaf cool before devouring. After a nice hot shower, I settled onto the futon in my room with a blanket, hot cup of coffee, and thick slice of the still slightly warm bread. I allowed the heavenly moment to clear my head of chemistry tests, running injuries, and lingering homesickness.
Buckwheat Almond Banana Bread
- 1/4 milk of your choice (I used part almond, part coconut)
- 6 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/3 cup yogurt (to make vegan, sub this with soy yogurt or another 1/3 cup of non-dairy milk – although the batter may be less thick the product should still turn out the same)
- 6 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 medium sized bananas, approx. 2 cups
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 2 cups trail mix (I used Sweet and Savory trail mix from Trader Joes)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender, add milk, melted oil, yogurt, vanilla, and bananas and blend on high until smooth (for chunkier banana texture in the bread, leave the bananas out of this step and mix into batter by hand). In a separate bowl, stir together flours, powder, soda, salt, and coconut sugar. Then add wet ingredients to dry and fold gently. Sprinkle in trail mix and then pour into a prepared loaf pan, muffin tin, or (as I was forced to use due to lack of supplies, and luckily it still worked) a 9×13 inch cake pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool and then slice and serve. This can be frozen and enjoyed several weeks later as well.
These are not your ordinary chocolate chip cookies. They have a nutty taste, outer crunchy edge, and inner chewiness. A slight nutty taste and dense texture makes these morsels quite satisfying. They are suitable for breakfast or dessert. I just had one while groveling through chemistry notes and will likely have another one (or two) with a cup of joe tomorrow morning before class.