fudgy pb choco chip banana bread :p

I have been raving about this recipe for weeks/my friends can contest to how fudgy and brownie-like this banana bread came out to be. It is moist, gooey, and full of sweet chocolate and banana flavor, with a little twist of peanut butter throughout the batter.

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Bananas are a perfect snack, especially before working out, and are a perfect addition to any breakfast meal (smoothies, oatmeal, bananas and peanut butter, etc). They contain 25% of the Daily Recommended Intake of Vitamin B6, which is important for red blood cell production, metabolism of carbohydrates (especially for breaking down stored forms of carbohydrates for energy, otherwise known as glycogen), production of neurotransmitters (GABA, dopamine, serotonin), and removing chemicals from the liver and kidney. Other foods containing high amounts of B6 include meats (tuna, turkey, beef, chicken), which are then followed by potatoes, sweet potatoes, and sunflower seeds.

Normally, when we think of bananas we think of the high potassium content (12% DRI), but bananas in fact do not even make it on the list of the top five foods with the highest potassium content (beet greens, lima beans, swiss chard, sweet potato, and potatoes), all of which have at least a 10% increase of potassium content, compared to bananas. Nonetheless, bananas are still a good form of potassium content, which is beneficial to cardiovascular health, good for lowering blood pressure, and maintaining dietary cholesterol. Bananas also are considered a food with a low-glycemic index, beneficial for those with diabetes, due to fiber content and water-soluble pectins, which moderate the digestion of the sugars in the banana. 13588982_10153869217591379_816867366_o

Banana Bread Recipe (adapted from Dairy Free Cooking):

Makes 1 9×5 Loaf

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup dairy-free milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups mashed bananas (about four bananas)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (more more) chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and oil the loaf pan. Set aside.
  2. Mix together flour, sugars, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. Whisk together apple cider vinegar and milk and let stand for 2 minutes. Add to dry ingredients, along with the bananas, oil, maple syrup, peanut butter, and vanilla extract.
  4. Fold in chocolate chips and pour into pan. Bake for one hour, but check at the thirty minute mark, and fifteen minutes after then, using the toothpick trick. ( I believe I took mine out at about 45 minutes).

chickpea “chorizo” pasta

This pasta dish has a surprising combination of flavors and has easily become one of my new favorite pasta dishes. I, personally, have never eaten actual chorizo, which is a type of smoky pork sausage, but this dish comparatively has a hearty, smoky flavor. The key ingredient is cinnamon. Many of my friends who tried this dish have been confused about the identity of this spice, as it is very subtle and meshes well with the rest of the spices used. This dish is great hot or cold and is a very filling lunch to bring to work. In the future, I am thinking of using this sauce on pizza, sandwiches, and maybe even as a dip for crackers.

 

Chickpea “Chorizo” Pasta Recipe (from Vegan Richa):

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz of pasta
  • 1 16 oz  jar tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp extra virgin oil
  • 1/2 cup onion slices
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1/4 tsp parsley
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle pepper powder
  • 2 tbsp chopped olive, 1 tbsp sun-dried tomato (optional)
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • Parsley for garnish

Directions:

  1. Cook pasta as stated on box by bringing water to a boil. Set aside.
  2. Heat a large pan at medium-high heat with 1 tbsp of oil. Add garlic, onion, and 1/8 tsp of salt and cook until golden, a few minutes.
  3. Add spices, soy sauce, olives/tomatoes, and chickpeas and mix well.
  4. Mash chickpeas lightly (until there is a crumbly texture) and cook for two minutes.
  5. Add two tablespoons of pasta sauce, vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and continue cooking chickpeas until dry (about 7-9 minutes).
  6. Add another tablespoon of oil and adjust spices.
  7. Reduce heat to minimum and add the rest of the pasta sauce and pasta. Cook for another few minutes.
  8. Add parsley, black pepper and/or olive oil for garnish and taste!