This bread was inspired by a snow day. I woke up to 8+ inches on the ground and by the end of the day there was at least double that. Since the snow plows don’t make it up our hill until late in the day, I knew a baking project was needed… and that meant banana bread. This version is loaded with frangipane and chocolate chunks. I love the added texture of frangipane and think the almond flavor goes so well with bananas, but if you’re unsure about it, leave it out- this banana bread is just as good on it’s own (but with chocolate, of course). And you definitely need a snack after shoveling all that snow.
Frangipane: Recipe adapted from Top with Cinnamon’s Frangipane Recipe. (P.S. I could eat this stuff with a spoon)
3 tablespoons almond butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup ground almonds
Directions: Cream together almond butter, sugar, almond extract, and egg. Add in the flour, salt, and ground almonds until combined. Set aside.
Banana bread: Adapted from Heidi Swanson’s Lemony Olive Oil Banana Bread
3 very ripe bananas
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup chocolate chunks (I prefer to chop a bar of chocolate for the varying sizes, but chocolate chips work just fine)
Pre-heat oven to 350 deg F. Grease a 9x 5-inch loaf pan.
Mash bananas into a large bowl. Add olive oil, yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and brown sugar and mix well.
To the banana mixture, add the flours, baking soda, salt, and chocolate chunks. Stir until just combined.
Pour half of the banana bread batter into the prepared pan. Using slightly more than half of the frangipane, dollop small amounts all over banana bread batter. Swirl together lightly with a fork or knife. Pour remaining banana bread batter into pan, and then repeat with dollops of frangipane. Swirl together once more.
Bake for 65 minutes. The frangipane inside will make it take longer to cook; it will look ready at about 50 minutes but will be under-done inside; tent with foil if it is browning too much.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Run a butter knife around the sides of the pan to ensure it is loosened before turning out onto rack to cool completely. Slice and share.