Sunday, September 8, 2013

Greek yogurt banana bread

My family and I recently returned from a week-long trip to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. My in-laws rented a house in Duck and were kind enough to invite us to spend the week with them at the beach. We went to the Outer Banks for the first time on a similar trip last year and enjoyed the area so much that we decided to return again this year.

One thing that I wasn't quite sure what to expect was the house rental. There were so many things to remember - when to pick up/drop off the keys, what amenities were included, when trash pickup occurred and other a host of other things. We quickly learned that house rentals like ours did not come with many (or any) home necessities like toilet paper, paper towels, soap, and basic kitchen condiments. Those were all items that we had to buy on our own.

Food was another big item we knew that we would have to buy. We were provided with an empty refrigerator and pantry and had to fill it with something that our families could eat. Last year, I made and brought blueberry muffin Lärabars, healthy no-bake Thin Mint brownies, and shoo fly pie to the beach house. This year, I decided to bake Greek yogurt blueberry muffins, chocolate chip cereal bars, healthy deep dish chocolate chip pie and this Greek yogurt banana bread.

This bread was wonderful. A few people in the house normally were not big fans of banana bread but said that this was incredibly moist and not too banana-y. The bread itself was only slightly sweet so it wasn't too sugar-laded like many of the banana breads you come across online. If you like nuts, raisins or chocolate chips in your banana bread, I am sure that they would be great additions as well.

Greek yogurt banana bread
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup mashed very ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Directions
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a standard 9x5 inch or 8x4 inch loaf pan and set aside (I used my silicone loaf pan and did not grease).

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl if using a stand mixer, beat together the applesauce and sugar on medium speed until combined. Add the eggs and continue to mix until the eggs are fully incorporated.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Turn the mixer to low and gradually add the dry ingredients to the mixer.  Mix until the dry ingredients are about halfway combined (if you continue beating the dry ingredients, you will end up with hard banana bread).

Stop the mixer and add in the mashed bananas, Greek yogurt and vanilla. You can either incorporate these by hand (using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon) or turn the mixer on low. The key is to not overmix the batter. You want to see some lumps of bananas.

Transfer the batter to your prepared loaf pan and bake in your preheated oven for about 1 hour and 10 minutes. Check at the 1 hour mark to see if your bread is done. A toothpick inserted in the middle should come out clean.

Once the bread is fully baked, turn off the oven and transfer the bread to a wire rack to cool. Allow the bread to cool completely before serving.

Bread can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for several days.

Yield: One standard 9x5 or 8x4 inch loaf pan

Source: Adapted from Martha Stewart

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