This bread recipe is the most versatile bread recipe that this writer has ever used. The ingredients can be interchanged with almost anything you have in your cupboards. Don’t have bananas? Substitute with grated carrots. Would you rather have pitted dates? What about adding raisins? The ideas are endless and this writer loves that fact. The best part of this recipe is that your kids will love it, and so will your husband. It has just the right amount of sweetness and the best part yet is that you are feeding them their vegetables and fruits in a way that they will love.
This writer has been making do with a tabletop oven so my temperatures and times are different than yours will be and I have to increase my temp and time to arrive at the desired result. But as they say, “Necessity is the mother of invention.”
3 over-ripened bananas (blackened skins)
2 c. zucchini (pulverized in food processor or blender)
¾ c. flaked coconut
½ c. sliced almonds (or chopped if using whole)
2 tsp. grated orange peel
2 c. bread flour (or all purpose flour)
½ c. flaxseed meal
1¼ c. sugar
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
3 eggs, slightly beaten
¾ c. canola oil (or other healthy oil)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Mix together the zucchini and over-ripened bananas, the coconut flakes, almonds and grated orange peel. Next add the 3 lightly beaten eggs and oil. Mix well. Add the bread flour, sugar, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. The consistency of the batter will be thick and gooey.
Prepare your bread pans and lightly coat with oil using a paper towel. Avoid cooking sprays as they are loaded with chemicals. If you prefer, prepare cupcake pans with liners. Make sure to only fill bread pans about half full as bread will rise somewhat. For muffins, bake at 375° for 20-22 minutes or until inserted knife comes out clean. If using bread pans, bake at 425° for 45-60 minutes or until knife comes out clean. Check doneness at 45 minutes, using the knife test.
It is really expensive to keep buying fruit bars and granola bars. Plus with all of the concerns about GMO’s in our food supplies, choose non-GMO products and organic fruits and vegetables. Since you are making it in your own kitchen, you know what has been used to make this bread. Plus, making it yourself is always cheaper and this is a great after-school snack or summertime treat or after-dinner dessert. You also do not need to worry about chemical preservatives being added; besides which, one loaf will be consumed shortly after it comes out of the oven anyway, with melted butter spread on each slice. Enjoy.
List of Ingredients
This writer has a deep freezer, so when zucchini is fresh in my garden, I eat it fresh in stir-frys and salads, but I also use my blender and pulverize enough to make 2c. for each zip-loc bag and freeze it for later use. Make sure the bananas have blackened skins so that the fruit will easily mixed into the other ingredients. You can use either whole almonds chopped or sliced almonds. You can use organic coconut flakes or fresh, it depends on your preferences. Use real vanilla extract, eggs, bread flour, baking soda, and canola or some other healthy oil such as grapeseed or almond.
Pulverized zucchini and over-ripe bananas
As listed above make sure your bananas are to the point that they have blackened skins so that the bananas will mix easily into the batter. The zucchini has been pulverized in a blender from last year's crop and was frozen for later use. It has been thawed and is now ready for use.
All of the ingredients have been mixed into the bowl and stirred until a gooey thick mixture has been obtained. If there are any chunks, you can leave it. Sometimes the blender won't pulverize all of the zucchini and this is OK. Sometimes also the bananas may have a chunk or two and it just adds a great texture to your bread. Mix all of the other ingredients together so that you do not have any pockets or lumps of dry ingredients.
Batter in the pans
After thoroughtly mixing all of the ingredients together, choose our bread pans and lightly oil them using a paper towel dipped in your oil. Pour the batter into the pans but only fill about half way, since there will be some rising of the bread as it bakes. Also, if you choose to not use bread pans, but prefer to make this recipe using cupcake pans, use liners as it will make clean-up a lot easier.
The batter has been baked: for muffins, bake at 375° for 20-22 minutes or until inserted knife comes out clean. If using bread pans, bake at 425° for 45-60 minutes or until knife comes out clean. The top of your bread will probably be dark as mine is as shown in the picture. But mine was baked in a tabletop oven so it had to baked longer. If using a regular over, yours may be lighter in color and that is OK.