In my quest to find healthier recipes, I came across Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley, two sisters who have written a beautiful cookbook called Hemsley + Hemsley: The Art of Eating Well, containing healthy and delicious recipes that are all completely gluten and grain-free, sugar-free and focus on using unprocessed, nutrient-rich ingredients. I received this book for Christmas and have been trying to make my way through it, recipe by delicious recipe.
I went on my first junk of the year a couple of weeks ago and thought it the perfect opportunity to try Hemsley + Hemsley’s recipe for banana bread. This is generally one of my favourite things, but I try to avoid it, knowing it’s not very good for me. Hemsley + Hemsley’s version, however, isn’t packed full of glutenous flour or sugar, but uses ground almonds and flaxseeds instead, therefore making it very good for me! If you want to cut out the dairy as well, then you can replace the butter with coconut oil.
This recipe is easy to make and still results in delicious, moist and fluffy banana bread that you’d never expect to be healthy. I added some chocolate chips, which obviously slightly removes it from being entirely healthy, but made it even yummier!
3 ripe bananas
30g butter (can be replaced by coconut oil)
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tbsp lemon juice
220g ground almonds
30g ground flaxseed
1 tbsp whole flax
Dark chocolate chips (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 170˚C and line a loaf tin with baking paper.
2. Mash the bananas and butter (or coconut oil if using) in a mixing bowl until blended together. Add the maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla, eggs, bicarbonate of soda, lemon juice and a small pinch of sea salt. Whisk together well.
3. Add the ground almonds and ground flaxseed and mix well.
4. At this stage I also added the dark chocolate chips and stirred them through the mixture. You can add chopped walnuts to add a bit of texture too.
5. Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin, sprinkle with the whole flaxseeds and bake for around 1 hour, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. You may wish to cover the bread with baking paper half way through if it starts to brown too quickly.
6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Slice it up and serve it warm or at room temperature.