Phew! It's the weekend. Time to listen to some songs from The National. Time to relax. Time to find your zen. Time to make some homemade bread.
I heard this title and I was so intrigued. The combo sounds so awesome, right? It’s from my favorite blog, How Sweet It Is.
I recently finished a book called Paris My Sweet, by Amy Thomas. She covered all of the best bakeries in New York City and Paris. Seriously, so good. Thomas talked about one particular bakery in Manhattan that is very successful. The pastry chef is well known for her French macaroons. But the funny thing is, she doesn’t even like sweets! In fact, the only time she would eat her desserts would be just to make sure that the flavors were on-point.
In a way, I totally relate. Except for me it is with breads and not sweets (sugar is my drug of choice). I am obssessed with reading about, looking at, and baking all sorts of quick breads and muffins. But, for multiple reasons, I am not a big bread eater. I really only reach for Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread. Creature of habit.
But you know what? It is not always about eating. Everyone cooks for matters of the heart. The artist in me loves to create different textures, colors, aromas, and mixtures of different ingredients. I seriously could look at different bread combinations all day long and then go bread crazy in the kitchen. Eaten or not… and always shared with others.
This bread is so cool. It is loaded with all things coconut.
Seriously. Like coconut everything. So rad.
But, if you aren’t as coconut-crazy as I am, do not worry! The coconut flavor is pretty subtle. You can play around with the banana bread and omit some of the coconut additions.
Banana Bread with Cinnamon Coconut Streusel
1 2/3 cups whole wheat pastry flour(I use gluten free all-purpose flour. Or I’ve done 1 cup almond flour and 1 cup g-free flour)
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup canned light coconut milk
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted and slightly cooled
3-4 ripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon coconut extract (you can omit this if you don’t have it)
- ½ cup sweetened or unsweetened shredded coconut (optional)
Coconut Streusel Topping:
- 2/3 cups brown sugar
- 1/3 cup flour (I use almond flour)
- ¼ cup sweetened or unsweetened shredded coconut
- 2 teaspoons unsweetened flaked coconut (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 3-4 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick spray.
For the bread: In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and brown sugar until smooth. Add in coconut milk and coconut oil, whisking until combined. Stir in mashed bananas, vanilla and coconut extracts until mixed. Add in the dry ingredients and shredded coconut. Mix until just combined. Pour batter in the greased loaf pan.
For the Streusel: Combine all the streusel ingredients in a bowl and mix with your hands until butter is easily dispersed. You want the entire mixture to be moistened. Evenly sprinkle on top of the banana bread batter.
I never use all of this toppig, so I reduce the amount of each ingredient a little.
- Place loaf pan on a baking sheet and set in the oven. Bake for 75-85 minutes, or until center is set.
- If the streusel starts to brown too much, tent the bread with aluminum foil.
- Remove the bread from the oven and let cool (30 minutes) before cutting.
My Baking tips:
I like to make this bread gluten free. Instead of whole wheat flour, you can easily use gluten free all-purpose flour. I’ve also made it with half flour and half almond flour. Any of these variations will turn out delish. pinky swear.
This bread can be stored at room temperature for a few days. Or you can pop it in the fridge. I like to wrap the loaves in plastic wrap and put it in the freezer, and it will last a month or two.