Photos by Rikki Snyder.
When I was in grade school, my mom used to make baskets full of homemade bread for me to bring to my teachers. I hated school and was pretty anti-establishment for a 10-year-old (yes, even back then, I was difficult — imagine that!), so bringing that basket of bread to school like I was a character in a Laura Ingalls Wilder book totally destroyed me. But I never complained about the leftovers we’d have at home because my mom’s quick breads were delicious. We’d have breakfast for days! Snacks for weeks! Desserts for fortnights!
I posted a vegan adaptation of one of her breads last year, but this is a version of one of my mom’s most popular recipes, Blueberry Banana Bread. My mom went vegan last year, so last summer I set out to veganize a bunch of her old recipes.
We’ve talked about veganizing breads and muffins before, and this one follows the standard pattern of swapping the eggs with ground flax. Easy! The original also calls for sour cream, which was trickier. I didn’t want to use a store-bought vegan sour cream, so I improvised with full-fat coconut milk for the creaminess and lemon juice for the sourness. I even cut down on the sugar in the recipe! I will be the first to admit that I’m not much of a baker, but somehow it all worked out.
In the year since I first adapted this recipe, I’ve made it several times and my mom has made it too and she says it’s just as good as the original, and I agree. Between the blueberries and the bananas, this is a dense, moist bread — exactly how I like my banana breads. It makes a nice weekend breakfast, but with a dollop of coconut milk whipped cream, it’s a fantastic vegan dessert option too. It also freezes well! Wrap it in a layer of plastic wrap, then foil, and pop it in the freezer until you’re ready to use it. I thaw it on the countertop overnight and it’s ready for breakfast the next day.
To keep the blueberries from sinking to the bottom of the loaf pans, toss them in a light dusting of flour before adding them to the batter.
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