Banana Avocado Bread

Banana Avocado Bread

This recipe will make two loaves.

Ingredients:

  • 4 large over-ripe bananas
  • 1-2 large ripe avocados
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp lemon juice (fresh is always better, but I’ve used the kind in a bottle when I don’t have a fresh lemon handy)
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder** (see note at bottom)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cups of unbleached bread flour
  • 1 tbsp (more or less to taste) cinnamon
  • chocolate chips and/or chopped walnuts or pecans if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Mash the bananas and avocado together in a bowl until well blended. One by one, add each of the other wet ingredients, one at a time. For the honey and oil, measure and add the oil first. Then measure the honey. It will slide right out of your measuring cup!

In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients. Slowly add it to the wet ingredients while mixing (I use a stand mixer). Once all are well blended, fold in chocolate chips and/or nuts if you’re adding them in.

Grease two loaf pans. Bake 40-50 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool for 10-15 minutes before slicing.

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Whole Wheat Bread

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I started baking our families bread back in November, when I found I couldn’t find ANY breads without either a corn or a soy product in it. I’ve played around with different measurements since then and this is a recent favorite!

(Mostly) Whole Wheat Bread

2 cups warm water (a little over 100 degrees, but not too hot!)
2/3 cup sugar
1 – 1/2 tbsp active dry yeast
—————–
2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup canola oil
2 cups white unbleached bread flour
4 cups whole wheat flour

In the (large) mixer bowl, dissolve sugar in the warm water. Gently stir in yeast. Allow yeast to proof until it appears to be a creamy foam. *This step is very important – be patient and let your yeast rise!*

Mix salt and oil into the yeast mixture. Attach your dough hook. Starting with one cup of white flour (or mix the two kinds together prior to this step), add it to the mixing bowl with your mixer on a low or stir speed. Continue adding the flour one cup at a time until your dough pulls away from the edges and makes a nice dough ball. Turn out on a lightly floured surface (I love having my pastry mat for this) and lightly flour your hands. I usually keep a small bowl with flour so I’m not reaching into the flour container with dough-y hands! Knead dough for 8-10 minutes. Place a couple tbsp of canola oil (I just eyeball it – you need a good amount) into a large bowl (or use the mixing bowl – that’s what I usually do) and smear around the edges. Add the dough back in, turn to coat it, and place a damp cloth on top. Allow to rise until doubled in size – between 1-3 hours (it takes less time to rise in a warm area, so if it’s cool, it will take the longer end generally). If you’re baking, or have your oven preheating, you can place your mixing bowl on top of the oven, helping it rise faster. Or if you have a sunny window… you get the point! 🙂 Yeast bread likes warmth!

Once the dough has risen, punch down (this is kinda fun – watch it “melt” into itself – kinda like a deflating balloon! My boys love watching this part!). Knead again for about 5 minutes. Separate into two, and shape into loaves. Grease your 9X5 baking pans (2 of them) and place your dough in to rise yet again. About 30-60 minutes this time, or until it poofs up over or to the edges. Bake in a preheated oven for 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees F. When it’s golden brown on top (like the picture) it’s finished. Pull out loaves and butter the tops while still warm (real butter, always). Let cool. Place on a cooling rack until finished cooling. You can freeze one loaf and slice the other with a nice, long, serrated knife. I keep mine in a ziplock bag on the counter – it’s usually eaten in a couple of days. I haven’t found my preferred way of storing my homemade bread yet – if you have ideas, please share them! To defrost your frozen loaf, you can preheat the oven to 250 degrees F, and place the loaf in for 10-15 minutes or so. It’s like a fresh loaf!

Please contact me for any questions, comments or suggestions! therivetingredhead@gmail.com

Happy baking!

Honey Wheat Bread

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Honey Wheat Bread

(makes 3 medium loaves, or 2 large loaves – read through before beginning)

Ingredients:

3 c warm water (NOT hot, but a tad warmer than body temp)
1.5 TBSP active dry yeast
1/4 C. canola oil
1/4 C. honey (I might have used just a smidge over 1/4 cup) 😉
1.5 TBSP coarse sea salt (use only 1 TBSP if using table salt)
3 C. white bread flour
3 C. whole wheat flour
small amount of room temperature butter

If you’re using a stand mixer (highly recommend) attach the large mixing bowl and pour in the water (not too hot, or you’ll kill the yeast) and mix in yeast gently. Let stand until the yeast proofs – it will look super frothy. I usually walk away and find something else to do for a bit – it’ll take around 15 minutes. Maybe a few more, maybe a few less.

After it froths, add the dough hook to your mixer. Pour in the canola oil, then measure and add the honey and sea salt. (TIP: If you measure and add the canola oil, then use that cup for the honey, the honey will slide right out!) Stir that around a bit. Add the flour one cup at a time, with the mixer on low (or stir). I started with the white flour, adding two cups, then a cup of whole wheat, followed by a cup of white, repeating until you have a soft dough. Mix for several minutes until thoroughly combined on slow or up to a 4. Turn out onto a lightly floured pastry mat, counter, or parchment paper. Lightly flour hands and begin kneading. Place in a bowl and cover with a clean, damp cloth (or paper towel) and let rise until doubled (at least an hour – and a warm spot will help it rise faster). Punch dough down, turn out to knead again. Lightly grease (or spray with canola cooking spray) 3 9X5 loaf pans or 2 loaf pans and a baking sheet if you wish to make rolls as well.

Separate the dough into three equal loaves. Shape two into loaves (three if you’re making three med. loaves and no rolls). The third batch, separate into 1.5 to 2 inch rolls and place on baking sheet with a small amount of space in between. Bake in oven preheated to 350 degrees F 20-30 minutes or until tops are golden (rolls may take less time, so check in 15 – 20 minutes to prevent overcooking).

Remove from oven when golden on top. Smear a small amount of butter over the tops of the loaves while still warm and let sit 5 minutes. Turn out onto cooling racks to finish cooling before slicing. Use a long serrated for slicing.

Alternatives: Use butter instead of oil. You can also use shortening, but I prefer canola oil. I hope your family enjoys this bread as much as mine! Happy baking!

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