Healthy Banana Bread With Chocolate + Marzipan

I aspire to be like a banana. You know: the older I get, the sweeter I get, the more people want to come over and bake with me? I just love the fact that a banana's life is totally not over when they get old and spotty. You just take all that away and freeze them for smoothies or "nice cream" or you squish them and make the world's best banana bread. The spottiest bananas make the most delicious banana bread. That's the law. Also, I realize people are divided on this topic, but I'm 100% team Chilled Banana Bread. My aunt has a totally bad-sass recipe for the most sugar-filled, moist, perfect banana bread you could ever imagine. Sadly, it's hardly the sort of thing you can bake frequently. This past weekend I stepped into World Market and almost spent all my money in the imported foods aisle. What I came away with were a few packages of rose petals and dried hibiscus (for experimentation), some speculoos cookies (for eating), and a block of marzipan. I'd never used marzipan but after opening the block and pinching off a corner to see what the heck it tasted like anyway, I decided it was the perfect thing to throw into a batch of my new favorite banana bread. The little nuggets of sweet almond paste are the perfect compliment to the nutty flavor of the hearty loaf. Sweetened only with banana and a little maple syrup, this recipe makes a perfect breakfast. I love mine sliced thick and smeared with almond butter and perhaps some sliced strawberries. For this particular batch I decided to get a little fancy and threw in a some chopped dark chocolate from a bar which had been bobbling around my purse, plus a few bits of the self-same marzipan to finish off the party-in-a-loaf. It isn't ground-breaking or a terribly original combination but that's the fun of banana bread: it's always gonna taste like home, no matter how you spin it.

Banana Bread With Chocolate And Marzipan
makes one loaf

1/3 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup honey or maple syrup
2 eggs
1 cup ripe, mashed banana (about 2 large bananas)
1/4 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate
1/2 cup chopped marzipan

  1. Heat oven to 325 degrees F and grease a 9x5" loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl mix together oil, maple syrup, eggs, and banana. Add in dry ingredients and mix quickly and well. Toss in chocolate and marzipan and gently fold into batter.
  3. Pour batter into loaf pan and sprinkle with additional cinnamon if desired. Bake for 55-60 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  4. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto wire rack and cool completely. Chill if desired, or eat immediately. 

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