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Banana Bread with Olive Oil + Fresh Ricotta



This Banana Bread recipe is one I've been hoarding in my culinary repertoire for quite some time now. It may sound a little quirky, a little savory, a little....healthy? Don't fret! Trust the process and make this your new go to! Omitting the butter and giving the bread some fats by way of a mellow extra virgin olive oil and smooth ricotta cheese keeps this bread super moist, but still has the lift and texture of a classic loaf. To avoid it getting too dense, three average size bananas should work perfectly here. With every oven being a bit different, I go a little over an hour on this one, but tent the top with foil to avoid it from browning too much as the center finishes baking. Makes 1 Loaf.



INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 ripe bananas

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 2 cups all purpose flour

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 3/4 cup olive oil

  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips, optional

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Set the oven at 350 degrees, and prepare your 9 inch loaf pan with parchment hanging over the sides, which will act as handles to remove the banana bread.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, mash together the bananas and the sugar until fully combined, then stir in the eggs.

  3. Separately, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

  4. Using a spatula, add the olive oil, ricotta, and vanilla extract to the banana mixture. Stir until thoroughly combined.

  5. Fold the flour mixture into the banana olive oil mixture gently until just combined. If using, gently stir in the chocolate chips.

  6. Transfer batter to your prepared loaf pan, tapping the pan on the counter for air bubbles, then place in the oven on the center rack to bake for about 60-70 minutes.

  7. Through the last 10-15 minutes, tent the top with foil to avoid the bread from over-browning. Use a toothpick inserted in the center to test for doneness.

  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool until transferring to a serving dish. Then slice and serve this delicious bread as an after dinner treat, afternoon snack, or even breakfast!




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