Lately I have been edging towards fully embracing a vegan diet. I am already vegetarian and have been for almost half my life now in total, but I am keen to go vegan and limit my impact on the environment even further. As a result, I have been experimenting with egg- free baking as I systematically look to find replacements for the eggs and dairy in our diet.
For a long time, I have been a fan of chia seeds – they are a great source of protein and I love chia pudding with coconut- just delicious! Having done some research into different egg substitutes, I decided to try ‘making’ one with chia and water and so far the results have been fabulous!
Yesterday I made a banana bread by adapting a tried and tested recipe that I have had for years and making some simple vegan friendly tweaks.
We always use vegan margarine and so no need to make changes there although vegetable oil would work equally well. In place of dairy milk I made the simple switch to almond milk and to replace the egg, I used 2 tablespoons of black chia seeds and mixed them with 5 tablespoons of water. After a minute or two, the consistency becomes more reminiscent of egg as the grains swell and expand and it worked beautifully in this recipe in place of the usual egg.
In addition to the vegan friendly changes above, I also reduced the amount of sugar I would usually use in this recipe and used coconut sugar instead as that is what I had available. The banana bread was still deliciously sweet as the bananas I used were very ripe and naturally sweet and the lower added sugar made this feel like a virtuously delicious breakfast this morning!
4 very ripe medium sized bananas
2 tablespoons chia seeds mixed with 5 tablespoons water
1/3 cup melted vegan margarine or vegetable oil
1/4 cup coconut or brown sugar
1/4 cup almond milk
2 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
Handful of chopped pecan or walnuts
1. Pre-heat oven to 175 degrees.
2. Mix chia seeds and water in small bowl or cup and set to one side for 5 minutes
3. Mash or blend bananas until smooth
4. Add melted margarine or oil, almond milk, sugar and chia/water mixture to the mashed up banana and lightly mix
5. Add flour and baking soda. Mix very gently until only just combined.
6. Add chopped pecans or walnuts for extra texture.
7. Pour batter into greased loaf tin and bake for around 45-50 minutes until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
8. Leave to cool in loaf tin. Sprinkle with icing sugar.
9. Enjoy a slice for afternoon tea or even breakfast as I did!
Yummy…Even if you are not heading down the vegan path, try getting creative with your baking and trying new or different ingredients that are better for the planet and also better for you!
Have a wonderful day!