Bub and I have turned a new page in our book. We have embraced clean eating. Am I saying we are 100% perfect all the time? No. We certainly have slips but, we just get back on the wagon and keep on keeping on. Before we got started I was totally daunted about clean eating and Paleo diets. It was scary and intimidating! We had committed to AdvoCare’s 24 Day Challenge which highly encouraged clean eating through the 24 days of the Challenge. So, I had to face those fears.
I thought okay, we will just eat lean meats, fruits and vegetables and just kinda do without carbs- that’s what I loosely thought eating clean was. When I presented this to Bub, I visually watched him have a meltdown. He quickly jumped to action and by jump to action, I mean he got busy Google-ing. Turns out, clean eating, loosely defined, just has 2 rules and then some common sense guidelines.
- No white flour but, whole wheat flour is fine as is other alternative flours (think almond).
- No Sugar but, honey and agave and natural forms of sugar are okay.
Okay, I was starting to relax. This clean eating business wasn’t nearly as bad as I had built it up in my head! You can still have a ton of food and completely comply with those rules. And the guidelines
- Avoid processed foods at all costs. (okay, duh! They simply can’t be good for your body.)
- Avoid sodas (from one Coke Zero addict to the next, they gotta go.)
- Read labels- if you can’t pronounce one of the ingredients- leave it on the shelf.
- Anything with ingredients listed need only have 5 ingredients or less to make it into your shopping card.
- Be very cautious of canned food.
- And dairy- you need to be aware of how much you are consuming and it needs to be at the top of the pyramid of your diet. (You know the bottom of the pyramid is veggies, then lean meats, and then fruit and then dairy at the top.)
What did all this boil down to for us? That we could totally do this and be successful with it!
Soooooo, fast forward a couple weeks. I was cruising around Pinterest looking for some clean eating recipes when I came across a Banana bread recipe. I click-click-clicked over to the recipe to see what was really going on and I had everything to make it (light bulb!).
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup sugar free applesauce (I didn’t have applesauce, I pureed an apple with a little water instead)
- 3/4 cup honey
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 3 mashed overripe bananas
And so, I looked at the comments. I always read them and someone complained about their results not being delicious like their unclean version… okay folks, when a recipe uses apples and bananas and honey and such instead of butter and oil and sugar it’s not gonna taste like Grandmoma’s recipe. I’m just saying.
I digress. The blogger suggested adding more spices to the mix. That sounded like a good idea to me, so I went ahead and got busy making this banana bread. Really, who doesn’t need banana bread in their life?!?!! This girl and her Bub and Baby Bub certainly do!
The instructions are as follows preheat the oven to 350 F and grease a 9 X 5 loaf pan. I greased two because I have had disastrous results over-filling loaf pans so now, I am over-cautious with them. Then the directions say mix together the dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking soda. And then to mix together the wet ingredients: honey and applesauce first, then mashed bananas (I mashed mine in the food processor) and then eggs. To this mixture I added 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of vanilla.
The final direction is to cook the banana bread for 60 minutes until you can insert a toothpick and it come out clean and then let it sit in the pan for 10 additional minutes after you pull it out of the oven before flipping it out of the pan onto a plate or cooling rack.
I was impressed. It has no sugar and no oil and it was pretty good. Bub did say that it would have been really good slathered in butter and I must admit he was right- probably even better slathered in honey butter. Overall, I was proud of myself for making this clean version of banana bread. Hawaiian bread, banana bread’s cousin, is my favorite- favorite. This was much more dense and of course not at sweet but still tasty and clean and healthy- to boot!
*4/4/13- It has been brought to my attention that the flour in the picture is not whole wheat flour. That is an honest mistake. When I was trying to buy whole wheat flour, that was the only brand that even mentioned wheat on the label at the store where I was shopping. It is a complete over-sight on my part and I apologize for any confusion.