Happy Birthday Banana Bread


Today is my 35th birthday. I have not done a ton of reflecting on this as per usual, the month of May is a busy one and the glorious occasion of my birth gets swept up in all the Mother's Day/Graduation/Stationery Show/Product Development mayhem. It's ok, that's how I like it for the most part.

Today I woke up a little early, had a few moments to myself and thought about what I would most like to have for breakfast. This Dark Chocolate Lemon Banana Bread immediately came to mind (sorry greens smoothie and healthy fruit!) and so I set to it. It is actually a tiny bit of a healthier version of banana bread with the whole wheat flour, heart-healthy olive oil and yogurt. It also has considerably less refined sugar than most recipes and if you are really looking reasons, good dark chocolate has great anti-oxidants…so technically, you are preventing disease by eating this. Hey. It's my party.

I found the first version of this recipe here, where I love almost anything Heidi makes. Heidi could tell me to follow a goose off a cliff and I would consider it. The goose would probably be delicious. My only tweaks were that I used the zest of a whole lemon (I think more lemon really balances out the chocolate and makes this really different, in a delicious way) and I once added walnuts. Which was good, if you like walnuts. I also skip the glaze. I didn't think it was necessary, but if you are an icing person, I think a lemony cream-cheese icing would be a good match over the glaze.

Birthday Dark Chocolate Lemony Banana Bread (BDCLBB for short):

You will need:

1.Cup all-purpose flour

1.Cup whole-wheat flour

3/4 Cup dark brown sugar (Make sure it's dark brown and not just brown, you can also use Dark Muscovado)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 Cup chopped bittersweet or dark chocolate (I think it is best when sort of shave-chopped…just be careful not to shave-chop your fingers)

1/3 Cup olive oil

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 large (or 2.5 smaller) mashed, ripe bananas

1/4 C whole milk yogurt (0% greek yogurt works best)

zest of a whole lemon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350˚. Put rack in the center

Grease and flour a 9 x 5″ loaf pan (or equivalent)

In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking soda and salt. Add the chocolate and combine.

In a separate bowl, mix the olive oil, eggs, mashed banana, yogurt, zest, and vanilla. Pour the banana mixture into the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until very golden brown (dark, but not burned…keep an eye on it) for about 50 minutes.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool for a few minutes then turn the loaf out to cool completely.



Let me know what you think!



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