There are a lot of flavors beyond banana hanging out in this loaf: coconut, chocolate, tahini and almond extract. They get along so well that you end up with something that tastes notably better than almost any other banana bread you’ve had before. It’s cocoa-rich, nutty and not too sweet. Using the whole fruit — both banana flesh and peel — punches up the banana flavor, but doesn’t overshadow the other notes. Nadiya Hussain’s recipe offers numerous substitutions; you could play up nutty notes by opting for almond butter and almond milk, or swap in olive oil in place of coconut oil. The recipe inspires infinite permutations.
- Serves: 1 person
- ½cup/100 grams virgin (unrefined) coconut oil, plus more for greasing the pan (see Tip)
- 2ripe bananas
- 2 ¼cups/280 grams all-purpose flour, plus 1 1/2 teaspoons for tossing peels
- ¼cup/64 grams tahini (or nut butter of your choice)
- ⅓cup/80 milliliters oat milk, nut milk or dairy milk of your choice
- 1teaspoon almond extract
- 1teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 ⅓cups/200 grams coconut palm or dark brown sugar
- ¼cup/20 grams unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2teaspoons baking powder
- Unsalted vegan or nonvegan butter (optional), for serving
Step 1Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 1/2-by-4 1/2-by-2 1/2-inch loaf pan with coconut oil and line it with parchment.
Step 2Wash the bananas then trim and discard the tips. Peel the bananas, then slice the peels crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick strips. Place them in a small bowl and toss with 1 1/2 teaspoons flour to coat; set aside.
Step 3In a large bowl, use a fork to smush the bananas into a rough purée. (Don’t worry about small lumps.) Add the coconut oil, tahini, oat milk, almond and vanilla extracts, and salt. Beat together with a whisk to thoroughly incorporate and create a thick batter. Add the sugar and beat with the whisk to combine.
Step 4Sift the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder into the batter and fold it in using a rubber spatula until no streaks remain. Fold the floured banana peels into the batter.
Step 5Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top into an even layer. Bake for about 55 to 65 minutes, until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Step 6Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then lift it out onto a baking rack using the parchment. Let it cool a bit, then serve warm with butter slathered on top, if using, or let it cool completely if you want to store it for later. (Wrapped tightly, the bread will keep at room temperature for about 4 days.)