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banana hemp seed bread

by Jackie Newgent  |  March 24, 2013  |  2 Comments

banana hemp seed bread

(Click on photo for full-size image!)

Makes 20 servings: 1 slice each

My brother, Jim, challenged me to develop a sweet yet good-for-you recipe to enjoy in the morning that has a punch of protein. I love challenges. So voilà … here’s one option for you, my dear brother. The protein in this made-over banana bread is mainly provided by egg whites and hemp seeds. The sweetness comes from extra-ripe bananas and a just-right amount of turbinado sugar–and it’s naturally enhanced by pure vanilla and almond extracts. Best of all, this inviting banana bread is nuttier and banana-ier than the original with twice the protein. Enjoy alongside a cup of Greek yogurt or cottage cheese for still more protein, if you like. I hope this baked delight finds its way to your family table … not just my brother’s!

Calories Saved: 20

1 2/3 cups whole-wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
3/4 cup turbinado sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted organic butter, melted
1 tablespoon roasted walnut oil
1/4 cup egg white powder (100% dried egg white) or hemp protein powder
2 large organic eggs
4 large fully ripened bananas (with brown spots), mashed
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
1/2 cup + 1 teaspoon raw shelled hemp seeds (hemp hearts)
1/3 cup walnuts, toasted, chopped

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly coat a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Dust with 2 teaspoons of the flour.
  2. Whisk together the remaining flour, the baking soda, salt, and cream of tartar in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Add the sugar, butter, and oil to a large bowl and blend with an electric mixer on low speed until combined. Add the egg white powder and eggs and mix well on medium speed, about 1 minute. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed just until a dough forms. Add the bananas and extracts and blend until just combined. Stir in ½ cup of the hemp seeds and the walnuts until evenly combined.
  4. Pour the batter evenly into the loaf pan. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 teaspoon hemp seeds. Bake until browned, set, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 hour 5 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan on a wire rack. Cut into 20 slices and serve. Or freeze for later enjoyment.

Per serving: 160 calories, 6g total fat, 1.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 25mg cholesterol, 130mg sodium, 22g total carbohydrate, 2g dietary fiber, 11g sugars, 6g protein


The “Before” Recipe

old-fashioned banana bread

(This was one of my mom’s recipes!)

Makes 20 servings: 1 slice each

1⁄2 cup + 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 1⁄3 cups sugar
2 large eggs, well beaten
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 teaspoon cream of tartar
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1⁄2 cup chopped walnuts

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream the melted butter and sugar well. Add the beaten eggs; blend well.
  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients; add the sifted dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Blend on low speed, just until completely mixed. Add the mashed bananas, vanilla extract, and nuts to the mixture. Stir until just mixed.
  4. Pour the batter into a well-greased and floured loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour.
  5. Cool completely on a rack. Cut into 20 slices.

Per serving: 180 calories, 9g total fat, 4.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 35mg cholesterol, 130mg sodium, 24g total carbohydrate, 1g dietary fiber, 12g sugars, 3g protein

Tasteover Tips

  • To boost nuttiness, try whole-wheat pastry flour in place of all-purpose flour; toast nuts; use a nut oil as part of the fat; and sprinkle in a little almond extract
  • For extra sweetness, make sure the bananas are extra ripe and add another one (hint: you’ll actually be able to use less butter due to the moistness from the extra banana)
  • Up the amount of  pure vanilla extract for more overall flavor; it can further enhance sweetness without sugar
  • When opting for more protein in a baked good, consider a small amount of pure egg white powder so no other significant adjustments are needed in the recipe for proper texture
  • Add intrigue along with texture and great nutrition (protein and omega 3s!) with hemp seeds; they’re trendy, too

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