Thursday, January 3, 2013

Tropical Macadamia Nut Bread

"Why Santa, Why?"  I lament!  Our Santa puts the same things in stockings each year: chocolate, nuts, orange, banana, hot cocoa packets (the same brand we keep in the cupboard-- he knows his stuff!), sometimes a lump of coal for those naughty kids, Almond Roca (for mom), and maybe candied cashews (for dad).

Each Christmas morning the kids dive into the filled stockings and gorge themselves on goodies.  Weeks later, when I am putting Christmas decorations away and rounding up the last hidden stockings, I find, to my dismay, brown mushy bananas and rock hard oranges.  WHAT A WASTE SANTA!!!!  Each year it happens, and each year I forget to update Santa on desired stocking stuffing!

So being a good, "use it up; wear it out; make it do; or do without!" kind of girl, I devise some nefarious scheme to use the unwanted fruit in delicious ways.  Smoothies are always a good option,  but this year I already have 4 zip bags full of frozen bananas waiting to be used in smoothies.... So .... Banana Bread?

I have a confession to make.  Deep breath.  I haven't made banana bread for YEARS!  It takes forever to bake, it is mushy in the middle and doesn't taste that great (to me..).

Determined to make a go at banana bread I searched for good recipes.  This one sounded good and used up my stiff oranges and mushy bananas.  The bonus was that it was low-sugar and low- fat.  The result.  "I like it, Sam-I-am!" 

Tropical Macadamia Nut Bread
I didn't have the macadamia nuts, and substituted with walnuts-- it worked.  Macadamia nuts or pecans would have been better.  YUM!
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon finely grated orange zest
1 teaspoon baking soda
4 egg whites (I use powdered egg whites)
1 1/4 cups mashed bananas (about 3 medium)
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2/3 cup  flaked coconut
1/2 cup coarsley chopped macadamia nuts

Pre-heat oven to 350.  Lightly coat a loaf pan with non-stick spray.

In a medium bowl, combine flours, sugar, zest and baking soda.

In a large bowl, beat the egg whites until foamy.  Add the mashed bananas and orange juice  and beat until blended.  Add flour mixture and stir until just combined.  Stir in coconut and nuts.  Pour into the pan.

Bake 50- 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Let the bread rest in the pan for 10 minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack.

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