Another recipe from The Extra Virgin Kitchen cookbook my friends …
Rye is traditionally associated with those beautiful Nordic folk. The Danes love it too. As I fancy the arse off both populations, I’ve been playing with rye recipes over the winter in a futile attempt to lure them into my orbit. I think this banana bread will do the trick. You’re welcome.
What makes rye so attractive?
Aside from its ability to lure Danes, this grain is rich in B vitamins, which act as spark plugs for energy ignition. Rye is also thought to have a higher concentration of cancer-protective lignans than any other cereal crop. Studies show that plant lignans can behave like anti-oestrogens in the body, particularly useful in the fight against hormone-related cancers. Winner!
Even more interesting, rye is the grain of choice for body-builders. Its unique amino acid profile can help build muscle mass. But don’t worry – nibbling away on Ryvita won’t leave you looking like a Transformer.
Instead of dairy in this recipe, we use extra virgin coconut oil. Don’t be put off by coconut oil’s saturated fat content. These fats are in the form of Medium-Chain Triglycerides. MCT’s readily convert to energy, in contrast to longer-chain triglycerides such as sunflower oil. This is done through our cell’s mitochondria – the gateway to our body’s fuel. No wonder sporting stars choose this oil over any other. What a shame no one told Lance Armstrong.
(I use British cups, 1 cup=250ml)
For the bread:
Just over 1/4 cup / 25g coconut flour (we used Dr Coy’s)
Just over 1/4 cup / 25g rye* or teff flour (gluten free choice)
Palmfull of dried dates
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt flakes
3 small eggs, beaten
1 cup mashed bananas (about 3 medium bananas)
5 tablespoons melted extra virgin coconut oil
3 tablespoons maple or date syrup
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*add a handful of oat flakes too if you have them, for extra texture
For the virtuous ‘Nutella’:
1/3 cup hazelnut butter (about half a small jar)
3 tablespoons cacao or cocoa powder
2 tablespoons maple or brown rice syrup
Preheat the oven to 180°C / 160°C fan /350°F. You’ll need a small to medium bread tin, lined and ready.
To make the ‘Nutella’, whip the ingredients together in a cup using a fork.
For the banana bread, get two large bowls. In the first one, stir the flours, dates, cinnamon, baking powder and salt together. In the second bowl, add the remaining ingredients and blend well. However tempted you may be, please don’t add nuts to this particular recipe. The beastly things like to misbehave with the coconut flour.
Using a balloon whisk, beat the wet mix into the dry mix and transfer to your pre-lined loaf tin. If you have banana left over, a few thin slices on top works well. They also turn sweet and squishy in the oven.
Bake for 40 minutes. Remove the bread from its tin and cool on a wire rack for 25 minutes. Smother great big slices with your virtuous Nutella (or reverence). A side of Ricky Martin works equally well.