Chocolate Marbled Vegan Banana Bread
I can say with almost complete certainty that over the past month I have been suffering with.. stage fright. Blog wise, of course. It has almost been a whole month since I last posted something, despite the fact that I still bake. I still take photographs of everything I bake. I still think about baking the same way. I still ask everyone for a detailed analysis of everything I bake. I just couldn’t bring myself to post about the things I bake. Which is just completely ridiculous.
You see, over the past month, my blog became common knowledge with almost everyone I know. Friends & their other halves? Yep, they all had a nice look & talked about it at gatherings. Extended family & their friends? You bet, some are even wondering when I’m going to put up certain desserts I made for them. Co-workers? I got called into my boss’s office to talk about the blog & how I could use my passion for food at work. All of this, especially the last one, has been utterly mind-boggling to me. Absolutely brilliant & unbelievable, but definitely mind-boggling.
Everyone I know finally knows about the blog. They know how much I bake, they know how much I think about baking, they know how much effort I put into the photographs & the writing & the editing & all of it. They know it all. Which is an amazing feeling, that everyone you know loves what you do with your spare time & they’re all really glad you enjoy it. But it’s also completely terrifying. Almost overnight, it seemed, the blog went from being my secret little hobby that a few close friends knew about, to something that everyone I regularly interact with was reading & watching. The more people talked to me about it, the more I put off writing a post. I was sweating under the pressure of writing a good post for everyone to read next. I was weak.
Basically, It has taken me far too long to realise that I shouldn’t feel any pressure to write a good post. Well, no more than usual. Everyone has already seen the blog, they’ve seen how I write & how I express myself, so there’s no need to freak about about something I’ve been doing for months now. If anything, I should be more embarrassed/worried about people going all the way back & reading my early posts.
Now, lets get down to business & talk banana bread. Not just any banana bread, Chocolate Marbled Vegan Banana Bread. Yep, vegan. A first for the blog, as well as for myself. Vegan recipes, as well as gluten-free recipe ideas, have been floating around my head a lot lately. As a non-vegan, usually when I see cakes or sweets labelled as vegan, I automatically assume it’s going to be tasteless, dry, or just generally unappealing. I was so wrong. Just because something is vegan doesn’t mean it had to be boring or taste terrible, there are actually so many food products out there that are “accidentally” vegan, you just don’t know it.
So for my first excursion into the wild world of vegan baking, I stuck with something I’m comfortable with: banana bread. Not only was this going to be a vegan banana bread, it was also going to have a chocolate marbled inside. I mean, why not? The swirly chocolaty interior looked awesome, but more importantly, it tasted awesome. The sweet banana bread flavour AND chocolate? Can you say match made in heaven? In case you haven’t gathered, I am firmly on the side of team chocolate. Always.
This banana bread, I am happy to report, was delicious. It was just as good, if not better, than a regular non-vegan banana bread. It was perfectly moist & fluffy on the inside, while still slightly crunchy on top from the baking. The fluffy insides of the bread were laced with chopped up walnuts &, of course, the chocolate flavouring from the cocoa powder. This will without a doubt not be my last attempt at vegan baking.
Makes one 8×4 loaf (Adapted from Post Punk Kitchen)
- 1 cup of ripe banana, mashed (roughly 3 bananas)
- ¾ cup of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup of almond milk
- 1 ½ cups of plain flour
- 3 teaspoons of baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon of salt
- ½ cup of walnuts, roughly chopped
- 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder
- 6 tablespoons of boiling water, divided
- Preheat the oven to 160°C & lightly grease your loaf tin.
- In a large mixing, beat together the mashed banana, sugar, vanilla extract, vegetable oil & almond milk. Add in the flour, baking powder, salt & walnuts & mix gently to combine, being careful not to overmix.
- In a cup mix together the cocoa powder with 3 tablespoons of boiling water until the chocolate is completely dissolved. Place the chocolate water into a separate mixing bowl, along with 1 cup of banana mixture. Mix the two together until smooth & incorporated.
- Add the remaining 3 tablespoons of boiling water to the first banana mixture & stir to incorporate.
- Scooping alternate ½ cupfuls of each batter into the loaf tin, try to make the batter as mixed up as you can. Once all of the batter is in the loaf tin, use a knife to swirl it around, making it even more marbled.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the bread comes out clean. Leave to cool before slicing.