Gluten Free Banana Nut Bread

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I met my husband nearly eleven years ago in St. Louis, and even then, in the early aughts, he was eating gluten free. That was back in the dark ages of gluten free foods. I remember going to an expensive health food store and searching in the freezer section for gluten free bread. It was terrible. The bread was heavy and tasted the way I imagine sweaty socks might taste if one were inclined to try such a thing. Lucky for us, gluten free food–love it or hate hearing about it–isn’t going away any time soon.

Here’s my adaptation for one of our favorite quick breads–gluten free banana nut bread. I adapted the recipe from Virginia Willis. She has wonderful recipes, and I am glad my mom couldn’t resist buying her Bon Appetit, Ya’ll cookbook for me. I substituted gluten free all purpose flour for regular flour (duh!), used coconut oil instead of butter because I like the texture, and added a tiny bit of xanthan gum.

Gluten Free Banana Nut Bread

Recipe adapted from Virginia Willis’ fantastic cookbook, Bon Appetit, Y’all

Ingredients

  •  1 1/4 cup gluten free all-purpose flour. (I favor King Arthur brand. I’ve had good luck with it and I’m very superstitious about baking–especially gluten free baking.
  • 8 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (don’t add too much or the texture will be gummy and disgusting)
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed (I use a potato masher.)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease bread pan with coconut oil.

I use a standing mixer with the paddle attachment to cream the coconut oil and sugar. I’m not sure if that’s an actual technique, but I let the sugar mix with the coconut oil until it’s dissolved (just as you would cream butter and sugar)–takes around 2 minutes. Next, mix the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt together. Then, add the two eggs to the sugar/coconut oil mixture. (Willis says to add one egg at a time.) Scoop the banana mixture into mixing bowl. Now add the flour and pecans. Pour batter into bread pan and back for around 50 minutes in middle oven rack. (or bake until the bread is golden and cooked through)

Serve warm, cold, hide in your pockets, or make a banana nut bread trifle. (cut banana bread into one inch cubes and layer with vanilla yogurt and sliced bananas)

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