Friday, April 8, 2011

Vegan Banana Bread with Extra Awesome Bananas

My last attempt at introducing vegan baked goods to my ever gracious host family here in Japan was a bit of a miss. Not so much a fail, as the cookies were still tasty enough, but from a personal standpoint I felt the finished product just didn't knock it out of the park with that Sadaharu Oh pizzaz.

This time around I set out for some banana bread action with a little bit of prep work before commencing; I did all the metric cooking conversions before hand, so I wouldn't find myself standing over my mac eying the keyboard with battered hands wondering if I could use my nose to peck out my conversion question close enough for Google to figure out what I really wanted to know. Avoiding that awkwardness was a G.I. Joe "now you know, and knowing is half the battle" win!

Vegan Banana Bread 
(freshly sung to for added awesomeness)



Recipe + Banana shenanigans await...



Right before the Tokyo Marathon took place, there was an effort to energize the bananas that would be fed to the marathoners on the day of the race by, in fact, encouraging the bananas themselves to just sorta be awesome. Instilling this can-do-über-confidence was accomplished by blasting the song Makenaide! (Don't Give Up) by Zard in the warehouse that the bananas were being held in for the week leading up to the event. Was it worth the effort? Well, I can't outright deny how awesome those bananas made me feel while I was eating them during the marathon, which was days before I actually found out about the banana-rama-sing-a-long, leaving little chance of placebo effect, so I'll let you draw your own conclusion. I did take this all into consideration when preparing my banana bread, in the off chance that encouraging bananas to be awesome will in turn reward a person by emanating awesomeness from your interiors, I chose to err on the side of caution, and was willing to give it a go. Whether you feel this is a necessary step in the process* is up to you.


Singing to bananas makes them extra awesome,
thereby making you extra awesome!



Vegan Banana Bread
2 large or 3 small (very ripe) bananas
¼ cup (60ml) of canola oil
½ cup (120ml) of sugar (use brown)
¼ - ½ cup (60-120ml) of soy/rice/hemp milk
2 TBSP (30ml) Molasses (or agave nectar)
2 cups (1pt. or 450ml) all-purpose flour
¾ tsp (4ml) baking soda
1 tsp (5ml) ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. (1ml) ground nutmeg (or allspice)
½ tsp (2ml) salt

1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease a 9x5 loaf pan.

2. Separate dry from wet ingredients in 2 bowls. Mash bananas with other wetness in one bowl, stir up dry ingredients in the other. Combine wet with dry after thoroughly mashing.

3. Pour the combined batter evenly into the loaf pan. Takes about 40 – 45 minutes. Stick a toothpick in the center to check for stickiness. The top should be lightly brown, and the toothpick should come out clean from the poke. Take out and let cool. 


Bonus Material: 
The Live Show Footage

Do You Realize (Bananas Are Nutritious)?


*If you have the option, I would suggest omitting the 7.4 earthquake/aftershock that came rolling through during prep-time for this recipe. Call it an unfair generalization if you must, but earthquakes are no good for anybody. 


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