Cottage Cheese Banana Bread

While banana bread is not the healthiest thing to eat, it is a great way to get rid of your bananas and get a little potassium in your system. Try out this alternative recipe that includes cottage cheese for a moist and protein-packed baked good. Pro tip: Buy full-fat cottage cheese because most low-fat and reduced fat ones have add preservatives and fillers. 

Recipe from James Distefano and The Institute of Culinary Education 

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1/4 stick Butter (melted)
3 tbsp Sugar
5 tbsp Sunflower seeds (toasted)
1 cup All-purpose flour
3/4 cup Oat flour
1 cup Light brown sugar (packed)
1/2 tsp Salt
1 1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/2 tsp Baking powder
13 tbsp Canola oil
2 3/4 tbsp Cottage cheese
2 Eggs
3 Small (ripe bananas mashed)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Prepare your 8-inch loaf pan. Brush the melted butter in the loaf pan and coat generously. Sprinkle three tablespoons of sugar to coat the inside of the pan as well. Shake out the excess sugar and set the loaf pan aside.

Place sunflower seeds on a cookie tray and toast for seven to eight minutes in the oven until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature.

Combine all of your dry ingredients including the cool, toasted sunflower seeds in a large mixing bowl and whisk together to evenly combine.

In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together the canola oil, cottage cheese, eggs, and mashed bananas. Stir to evenly combine.

Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients to form a stiff batter, (the batter will look stiffer than a typical cake batter however the banana bread has plenty of moisture in it).

Place the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 45-60 minutes or until well-risen, golden brown, and when touched the bread lightly springs back.

Cool the bread in the pan for 20 minutes before removing it from the pan, cooling it in the pan first is important because it gives a chance for the bread’s structure to firm up and set. If it’s handled too soon while it is still hot, the bread will crumble and you’ll be left with a big pile of banana bread crumbs.

After 20 minutes, remove the banana bread from the pan and continue to cool on a wire rack until room temperature.

**Note: This cake is best eaten the day it is made, however if it's wrapped well, it will last for up to three days. Due to the oil, cottage cheese and mashed banana, this bread will stay moist as long as it is wrapped well. This bread is also delicious when it is lightly toasted, served with your favorite jam, enjoyed with a hot cup of coffee or tea or enjoyed in the company of good friends and family.