07 January 2010

Pineapple Banana Birthday Loaf

Tuesday morning I got up with every intention of celebrating my children’s second birthday with pancakes or waffles or something else that falls in the extravagant category when compared to a handful of cereal and a cup of milk. Unfortunately, they woke up too early to let me get a head start and were ready for cereal before I was ready to sift flour so I decided then and there that I would create a recipe just for them incorporating things I know they love, bananas, pineapple and bread.

I make, shall I dare to say, too much quick bread around here, and I have a basic knowledge of what goes in them so I sat down and jotted down some ideas for a tropical themed bread and worked out a recipe to try. As I was putting the bread together I made a few changes as I saw the batter form and having now tried it I think I would make one more change but overall I thought this bread was a huge success. The children, who got to try it following their lunch, loved it. They each had two slices for lunch and then again for breakfast the next morning. By Thursday the two loaves the batter had made were all gone.

Pineapple Banana Birthday Loaf

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup Fat Free Buttermilk
3 eggs
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup applesauce
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/2 cup crushed pineapple
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1 cup coconut
4 bananas (very, very ripe and mashed)
1 overflowing cup of walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two loaf pans generously.
2. Combine flours, soda, salt, cinnamon. Set aside.
3. Combine sugars, applesauce and oil using an electric mixer. Add eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, bananas, pineapple and juice.
4. Combine flour mixture with wet ingredients by hand. Add coconut and walnuts.
5. Pour into prepared loaf pans and bake 55-60 minutes rotating halfway through.

One thing I decided in making this bread was to mix applesauce and oil. Since having a baby four months ago I have been making small changes to my baking. Applesauce has been the biggest change and I implore you to give it a try in your next quick bread recipe. Sometimes I substitute all the oil for applesauce and other times just some of the oil. With this recipe I decided to add applesauce and oil to equal 1 1/3 cup. First I added this:

My applesauce of choice, Mott's No Sugar Added All Natural applesauce. I have this stuff stashed throughout my pantry. I added a little more than 2/3 applesauce and then poured oil in to equal 1 1/3 cups.
I then creamed the wet ingredients; Buttermilk, eggs, sugars, applesauce, oil, vanilla and my secret ingredient, pineapple juice and bananas with my electric mixer. In a separate bowl I combined the flours, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Not wanting to over mix I combined the wet and dry ingredients by hand. I have learned that a dense quick bread is the result of overmixing so I try and be very gentle with my breads.

Ah, yum, coconut. To think there was once a day when I refused the stuff.
This bread was made with a half a cup of crushed pinapple and a half a cup of pineapple juice. I think the next time I make this bread I will reduce the juice to a quarter of a cup. The flavor wasn't that strong and I think it would make for a little less moist of a bread.
I like to heavily grease my pans. I hate when things stick.
So with the oven preheated, the pans greased and the wet and dry ingredients combined I added the coconut and a lot (1 overflowing cup) of walnuts to the batter.I baked the loaves for 25 minutes and then rotated them and baked them for another 30 minutes. I cut into one of them right away (it was after lunch and wanted the children to be able to try it before nap) and I think this was a mistake. The second loaf wasn't cut until the next morning and it tasted not so moist and quite delicious. Needless to say both loaves were gone in two days.

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