For years I automatically (naively) assumed that because of its syrupy consistency and supreme sweetness, that honey was not nutritious and had no real benefits. In fact, I’d default to sugar whenever and wherever I could. However, the more time I’ve spent in the kitchen, working through various recipes and educating myself on their ingredients, the wiser I’ve become.
First and foremost, honey is a natural sweetener that contains minerals and vitamins. It has antioxidant and antimicrobial properties that aren’t present in sugar and has a lower Glycemic Index (GI) than sugar. In layman’s terms, the lower the GI, the more gradual and healthier the digestion process. In addition, milk and honey are often served together as both these ingredients help in getting a smooth soothing skin. And, honey contains nutraceuticals, which are effective in removing free radicals from our body. As a result, our body immunity is improved. I was amazed.
Since Mom’s Banana Chocolate Chip Loaf is one of her most-celebrated desserts, I was a bit skeptical that her Banana Honey Bran Bread could even measure up. But, I was willing to give it a try. And, at the very least, I knew the combination of honey with the bran – a probiotic food (meaning it has natural antibacterial fighting properties)- would be a winning nutritious combination.
But, what about its taste? Any time I’ve ever eaten bran, I’ve found the foods taste dried out.
I was curious to see how the bread would turn out after its hour in the oven.
It is obviously grainier and certainly not as sweet and moist as the banana chocolate chip loaf.
Its consistency is dense due to the bran but, it as a nice subtle flavoring of bananas and nuts and honey.
When polled, my kids definitely opted for the Banana Chocolate Chip Load simply because they said it was sweeter and tasted more like a dessert bread.
However, the bran bread is the perfect side to any breakfast meal.
Next time I would definitely add in 1 cup of dried fruits (probably cranberries or raisins). I would increase the amount of honey from ½ cup to a full cup. Additionally, there’s no harm in adding in more mashed bananas for a fruitier taste.
But, mentally, just being aware of the amounts of fiber and healthy honey sweetness in the loaf allowed me to appreciate the bread even more.
Banana Honey Bran Bread
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup bran
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cup mashed bananas
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In medium-sized bowl, sift dry ingredients together. Stir in walnuts.
- Beat eggs slightly. Add honey, oil, milk and mashed bananas.
- Add banana mixture to dry sifted ingredients and stir until flour is combined fully.
- Spoon batter into greased 9×5 loaf pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Let cool on rack prior to cutting.
Notes: Since I’m not a huge nut fan, I ground up the walnuts in the Cuisnart before I added them to the dry ingredients. I would add more bananas and honey as the bran overpowers all the other ingredients.