A Lot of Little Loaves for My Little Boy

Lots of Mini-Loaves for Little Fingers!

We are going away for several days and now that Finlay is eating a lot of solid food, traveling is different than it used to be when he was exclusively breastfed. I strongly believe that there are pros and cons to every developmental stage in babyhood (and likely in life too). I’ve tried not to be one of those people who wishes for him to be a little older. I’ve tried to enjoy the present and I’ve tried to recognize that while there may be challenges now that won’t be there when he is older, there will be other challenges then (just as there are benefits now that won’t be there when he is older). This is the case with solid foods. While it’s nice to be regaining some of my “old” life back as he becomes more independent, there was something very nice about the portability of the exclusively breastfed child. Now when we go somewhere I have to come armed with a picnic basket and sippy cups. So that brings us back full circle to the point of this post. In anticipation of our upcoming trip I spent Friday afternoon making baby friendly mini-loaves in 3 flavours (apricot bread, fruit-filled banana bread and carrot banana bread). These are great for cutting into small slices or fingers and Finlay loves them. All of the recipes have been modified to have less sugar and less fat so they’re pretty healthy too! And they’re not just for babies. They make a yummy and healthy snack for everyone in the family. Here are the 3 recipes:

Mmmm, Carrot Banana Mini Loaf

1. Fruity Banana Bread:

  • 1/4 Cup Oil or Melted Butter
  • 1/3 Cup Apple sauce (you could skip the oil and use more apple sauce instead)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 1/2 Cup Flour (your choice, I used whole wheat. Next time I’d do 1c whole, 1/2 cup white)
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 3-4 large, ripe Bananas Mashed(I used 4)
  • *Optional* 1/4 Cup Brown sugar (I put in 2 tbsp brown sugar, next time I’d use the full 1/4 cup)
  • *Spice as you see fit; I added 1/2 tsp of allspice, (next time I’d just put in cinnamon)
  • 3 oz dried fruit (I used dried apricot, cranberry, currant,  cherry, raisin mix)

Combine oil/butter with apple sauce, vanilla (and sugar if you wish). Add flour and baking soda. Add bananas. Divide into 4 mini loaf pans and cook at 325 for ~40 min. Watch carefully and pull when cake tester comes out clean.

A productive afternoon of baking!

2. Apricot Bread

  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce
  • 1 cup buttermilk (I used 1/4 cup buttermilk powder, which I added to dry ingredients and 1 cup water which I added to wet ingredients)
  • 1 egg

Directions

• Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease a 12 cup muffin pan, line with paper muffin cups, or grease mini loaf pans. Place apricots into a small bowl, and pour the boiling water over them. Let stand for 5 minutes.
• In a medium bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt (and buttermilk powder, if using). In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted butter, oil, buttermilk (or water if using powder) and egg. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and stir until just blended. It is okay for the batter to have some lumps. Drain water from apricots, and mix them into the batter. Spoon into the prepared muffin cups/pans. For Muffins, Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the top springs back when lightly pressed. For Loaves, Bake 30 minutes (or until a cake tester comes out clean when inserted). Cool in the pan over a wire rack.

The results of a busy day in the kitchen! Thank goodness for dishwashers!

3. Carrot Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil (could replace with apple sauce)
  • 1 cup sugar (still tastes good when decreased by 1/4c)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (again, could do 1 c white, 1 c whole wheat)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Directions:

In a mixing bowl, combine oil and sugar. Add eggs; mix well. Combine flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon; gradually add to the creamed mixture alternately with bananas. Stir in carrots and pecans. Transfer to a greased 9-in. x 5-in. x 3-in. loaf pan or to 4 mini loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees F for 55-65 minutes (Only need to bake about 40-45 min if using mini-loaves) or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

ENJOY!!!!

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