Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mango, Banana, and Coconut Loaf (Sugar-Free)

I first ate mangoes in Mexico as a high school student. They were ripe and slightly squishy, and faintly smelled of pine. Someone showed me how to slice off a slab from the side, and scoop out the flesh with a teaspoon. The juice dribbled down my chin and arms, falling in fat, orange drops from my elbow to the dusty ground below.

There were ten of us high schoolers on an outreach project near Tijuana. We spent the week running kids' programs and hosting evening gatherings at local churches. And every day at breakfast I ate a juicy mango. I savoured every bite of them. I used my teeth to gnaw off the stringy bits of flesh around the huge seed.

This loaf reminds me of those first experiences with mangoes. This tropical loaf is my Secret Recipe Club choice for April. I was assigned The Pyjama Chef's blog. It's written by Sarah, a running, baking, blogging powerhouse whom I have enjoyed getting to know. She was inspired to try a new banana bread recipe and she described how successful it was. In turn, I was inspired to try a new banana bread recipe. I used hers a starting point because I loved that it had coconut oil, coconut milk, and coconut flakes. I added the mango puree (and left out the sugar and chocolate chips) and made it 100% whole wheat.

Mango, Banana, and Coconut Loaf
adapted from The Pyjama Chef
makes one loaf, 16 servings

2 c whole wheat flour
1 t baking soda
1/4 c (20 g) unsweetened coconut flakes
2 very ripe mangoes (about 900g)
2 very ripe bananas
1/2 c (125 ml) coconut oil
1/3 c (80 ml) coconut milk
2 eggs
1 t vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and coconut flakes.

Slice the mangoes vertically down each of their flat sides. Use a teaspoon to scoop the flesh out into a jug (or blender). Add the bananas and mash or puree using the blender. You should have about 2 c (500 ml) puree.

Measure the coconut oil into a large plastic or glass bowl. Microwave on medium power for 20 or 30 seconds to melt it.
Add the fruit puree, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla extract, and mix well.
Add the dry ingredients and whisk.

Pour into a 9"x5" (23 x 13 cm) loaf pan.
Bake at 350 F (180 C) for 50-60 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.

Do you have any memories of your first time trying a favourite food?

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