Banana-Date Bread
February, 2006

Serves 12 / Naturally sweet bananas and dates team up in this hearty, refined-sugar-free bread, providing potassium, magnesium, and some key B vitamins. The more ripe the bananas, the sweeter the bread. Cinnamon adds another hint of sweetness and has been shown to boost blood sugar metabolism.

10-12 whole large dates, pitted
11/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour, plus 1 tablespoon
1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup walnut halves, coarsely chopped
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1 whole egg
1 egg white
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cinnamon, for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Place dates in small pan, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and allow dates to soften 5–7 minutes. Remove dates from water and transfer to
a blender or food processor. Purée until a smooth paste is formed.
2. In a medium bowl, mix 1-1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Stir in walnuts.
3. In a small bowl, combine mashed bananas, yogurt, whole egg, egg white, and vanilla extract. Add 1/2 cup date purée to banana mixture. (Refrigerate any extra purée for future use.) Add banana mixture to flour mixture and mix just until combined. Do not over mix.
4. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Coat bottom and sides with remaining 1 tablespoon whole-wheat pastry flour, shaking out excess. Pour in batter and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake for 55–60 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean. Cool in pan.


PER SERVING (1 slice): 170 cal, 32% fat cal, 5g fat, 1g sat fat, 20mg chol, 5g protein, 29g carb, 4g fiber, 130mg sodium