I am in full holiday mode. For most people, this means putting up a Christmas tree, brushing the cobwebs off of holiday ornaments and lights, ransacking department stores for holiday gifts on sale, regifting last year's presents, and overpaying a college student working the night shift at Barnes & Noble to wrap your presents. For me, however, the holidays are all about food. Preparing food and sharing it with others is my favorite part of the holidays. In fact, it's probably my favorite part of life. In particular, I love baking for others (and myself, duh). For the last month, I've been baking up a storm. Dark chocolate peppermint brownies, persimmon cornbread, chocolate pumpkin bread, festive glazed donuts, raw fudgy brownies, salted dark chocolate tart, pumpkin cheesecakes. I could go on and on, but you're probably drooling by now, so I'll just leave it there.
This persimmon banana bread may not be a holiday classic but it certainly should be. It's moist and gooey from the ripe bananas, it's sweet from the persimmons, it's crunchy from the hazelnuts. It's got a lot of character and flair, and I'm going to pat myself on the back for this one. It's also gluten-free, in case you care about that kind of thing.
Happy Holidays, friends!
Persimmon Banana Hazelnut Bread
- 1/4 cup vegan butter, melted and cooled
- 3 tablespoons organic sugar
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup canned light coconut milk
- 1/2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour*
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, roasted
- 3 ripe bananas
- 2-3 persimmons, thinly sliced
- 2-3 teaspoons coconut sugar or brown sugar
- Powdered sugar for serving, optional
*Feel free to use regular all-purpose flour. It'll yield a lighter, airier bread than a gluten-free one.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8x4 inch loaf pan.
- Mash the bananas with a fork or your hands.
- Whisk together the wet ingredients in a large bowl (butter through vanilla extract).
- Whisk together the dry ingredients in a medium bowl (flour through nutmeg).
- Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, using a whisk to thoroughly incorporate. Once it gets tough to mix, switch to wooden spoon.
- Add the mashed bananas to the mixture and incorporate. Fold in hazelnuts.
- Pour 1/4 - 1/3 of the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Use a spatula to spread the batter evenly. Top with slices of persimmon and sprinkle a teaspoon of coconut or brown sugar on the slices. Pour remaining batter on top of persimmons. Repeat with the remaining persimmon slices and coconut or brown sugar.
- Bake in the oven for approximately 45 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving.