Our weather, as I’m writing this post at 1:00 in the afternoon, 56 degrees with a chilly rain falling. Nothing odd about that except for the fact it’s July! What the heck?!? Don’t get me wrong, I’m in no way, shape, or form complaining. I love this—ideal running weather, which I’m usually not able to enjoy until September at the earliest. But it is unusual for mid-summer in Minnesota when we’re characteristically complaining about the heat, humidity, and mosquitos.
Perfect running weather, and perfect baking weather! I had some bananas that were at the bake-with-‘em-or-throw-them stage, so I thought banana bread would be nice. But with a twist. On a chilly day like this, a little booze was in order—in the form of rum-soaked golden raisins. Some cinnamon, nutmeg, and molasses, too, makes for a great cool, rainy day treat! Enjoy—even if it’s not cool or rainy where you are!
Cold Day in July Banana Raisin Bread
Adapted from Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero
1 cup golden raisins
2-3 tablespoons dark rum
2-3 very ripe bananas
1 egg, beaten (to make this vegan, sub ¼ cup applesauce)
¼ cup grape seed oil
1/3 cup organic sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
2 cups white whole wheat flour
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan.
Place raisins in a shallow bowl and add rum. Pour boiling water over to just barely cover. Let sit 15 minutes and drain (reserve rum water for another use).
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
In a medium mixing bowl, mash the bananas very well. Add the egg (or applesauce), oil, sugar, and molasses and whisk until well mixed. Use a wooden spoon to mix the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined. Fold in the raisins.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes (rotating pan about halfway through for even browning). The top should be nicely browned and a knife inserted through the center should come out clean.
Remove from oven and set pan on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Run a butter knife carefully around inside edge of pan to loosen loaf and invert on to wire rack to cool completely. Delicious by itself or with jam or Earth Balance or both! Makes 1 loaf.