Sunday, March 27, 2011

Oatmeal Strawberry Banana Bread

I generally don't like fruit breads.  I'm just not a fan.  I grew up disliking bananas and all things banana flavored, and you sure as heck weren't going to get me anywhere near zucchini bread.  Now I'm pregnant, so I can't get enough of bananas (seriously, we buy 5-6 lbs a week to share among us).  Plus, they're cheap, and in actually knowing the cost of my food, I've become much more frugal.

Except when it comes to new seasons of fruits.  In fall, I can't wait for the apples to become plentiful, and in winter I'm starting to gain an appreciation for squash.  In Spring, I'm SUPER excited for strawberries, which is how I've ended up with a fridge full of pints of mediocre strawberries.  They've started becoming plentiful, but still not fresh around here.  I don't care-- I see those red berries and I see they're not QUITE as expensive as they usually are, and I buy some.  And predictably, lately they're terrible.

As a result, I'm left this morning with a couple of frozen bananas and about 1 1/2 pints of strawberries that are quickly going from mediocre to bad.  Here's what I came up with!

Its great if you have berries that are about to go bad. It tastes just like Strawberry NutriGrain bars. And as far as sweet breakfast foods go, its not SO terrible for you. :)

Oatmeal Strawberry Banana Bread


* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
* 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
* 1 Tablespoon Flax meal
* 1 cup white sugar
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 8 Tablespoons melted butter
* 2 very ripe bananas, mashed (I like to freeze them first, but very ripe would be fine)
* 1/3 cup plain yogurt or sour cream (full fat makes better bread, but you could try low fat)
* 4 eggs, lightly beaten
* 1 1/4 pounds fresh strawberries, sliced
* 1/4 cup rolled oats (for the top)

Preparation Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease two 7x3 inch loaf pans, or two 9" round cake pans. (I think it works better in the cake pan, but its just a preference.) One of my tricks is to spray the pans and then swirl white sugar around the bottom (instead of flour). It works just as well, and tastes/looks yummier!

2. Stir together the flours, 1 1/2 cups rolled oats, flax meal, sugars, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk together all of the wet ingredients except strawberries; stir into flour mixture until just moistened. It will be a very thick batter. Fold in strawberries. Pour into the prepared loaf pans, and sprinkle the tops with the remaining 1/4 cup of rolled oats.

3. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes for the loaf pans, 30-35 min for the cake pans. Cool the strawberry bread in the pans for 5 minutes before cooling completely on a wire rack.

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