Prune Banana Bread?

The other day, my husband and I were craving a dessert.  I wanted something good, but not too unhealthy.  I came across this recipe on myrecipes.com.  It’s a recipe from a cooking school, La Cocina Que Canta at Rancho La Puerta, a hotel and spa in Baja California.  I love cooking with prunes, but I’ve never used them in this way.  I was intrigued by the lack of sugar and butter in the recipe.  I had to give it a try!  Franz and I give it a big thumbs up!  It has a perfect chocolate flavor – not too sweet, but just enough to satisfy my chocolate craving!  If you have any great recipes using prunes, let me know!  I always buy a huge bag of them, & I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate them into my meals!

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Chocolate Banana Bread

12 ounces pitted prunes

3/4 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2)

2 large eggs

1 cup all-purpose flour or whole wheat pastry flour (or 1/2 cup each)

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 cup chopped walnuts (I used half walnuts and half pecans.)

1/2 cup banana chips, coarsely chopped (I used unsweetened, freeze-dried banana slices from Trader Joe’s.)

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1)  In a small saucepan, bring prunes and 2 cups water to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until prunes are very soft, about 20 minutes.  Drain.

2) Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly butter a 5-by-9-in. loaf pan and line bottom with a piece of parchment paper cut to fit.

3) In a food processor, whirl prunes and bananas until very smooth.  Add eggs and whirl to combine.

4) In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, and baking soda.  Stir in nuts, banana chips, and chocolate chips.  Scrape the thick batter into a pan and spread level.

5) Bake bread until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out a little chocolaty but not gooey, 45-50 minutes.  Loosen bread from pan with a knife and invert onto a rack.  Remove parchment.  Turn bread right side up and let cool at least one hour before slicing (my husband and I waited about 15 minutes!).

Take care and happy eating!

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