Happy easter, everyone!
Easter break is a great time to catch up with your favorite people, do a bit of spring cleaning and try out old and new kitchen experiments. This baking experiment is a crossbreed between traditional baking and my mini attempt to use healthier options for pastries and breads. Normally, we prefer to use less butter, less dairy and less sugar chez nous. It’s amazing how you can easily substitute these ingredients with natural and healthier counterparts.
Here’s a list of simple baking substitutes that I love for baked goodies:
Butter = Extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
Sugar = Coconut sugar or maple syrup (You can also use beets or dried fruits like dates)
Bleached flour = Mix of almond/hazelnut meal and buckwheat flour/spelt flour/cassava flour
Milk = Almond/Coco/Soy milk
I know, it may sound a bit scary and strange to substitute certain ingredients, especially with baking. But trust me, we’ve been using these substitutes a lot in the last 2 years, and our love for baked goodies hasn’t changed a bit. If you wanna take it slow, try using substitutes for half of the quantities first. And then go crazy and use only the natural/healthier ingredients the next time.
Here’s a banana hazelnut bread we recently baked with half traditional and half natural/healthy baking ingredients.
Banana Hazelnut Bread
4 smashed mini bananas (I used the señorita ones)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup wholewheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup hazelnut meal
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
15g dark chocolate, broken into small pieces (optional)
Pre-heat the oven to 175°C. Grease your baking pan with butter or olive oil.
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl until they are well-incorporated. Add the broken chocolate pieces and fold the dough making sure the choco pieces are not concentrated in one area. Place dough in the greased pan and sprinkle with praline. You can also use chopped hazelnuts or almond slivers.
We used these Theo & Philo 70% dark chocolate from the Philippines which were not at all too sweet. Check out their other chocolate concoctions – Adobo chocolate, anyone?
Bake the dough for about 45 mins to 1 hour. Let it cool and then serve with crème fraiche and banana slices.
Now does that look like a sad bread?!
Enjoy some egg-hunting and some good ol’ family time, folks! ✌︎