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Happy Thursday, happy tummies! This week is just scooting right along, and tomorrow is already Friday! Wow!

mm mm good!

So today, the glorious smell of banana bread wafted through our house all day! It was so wonderful…like being inside a Yankee Candle:) And what was even more wonderful? Eating the GF banana bread!

even better as a dessert:)

I’ve made GF banana bread before, which was pretty doggone amazing. You can check out my Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana Bread here. Yes…both peanut butter AND chocolate in banana bread. It was beyond decadent, and so good you couldn’t help but giggle. But this banana bread, I decided to make a little more traditionally — plus it has farm fresh eggs in it!

I’ve read enough banana bread recipes that I patched together my own GF version. So here we go!

1 cup GF AP flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1 tsp Xanthan Gum
1 tsp baking soda
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 ripe bananas
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp EVOO
2 Tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 whole egg + 1 egg white
1/2 cup organic sugar
1/8 cup maple sugar
1/4-1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350. Combine all dry ingredients, and the chocolate chips, in a bowl and whisk to combine. In a separate bowl, with a hand mixer, blend the bananas, vanilla, EVOO, milk, eggs, and sugars. You don’t want any lumps in the banana puree. Then, in 2 batches, add the dry to the wet, and stir to combine. Don’t over mix! Then pour batter into an olive-oil-sprayed bread pan and bake for 40 minutes, when a toothpick comes out clean. Enjoy!

moist, delicious & gluten free!

So that was our dessert first! Next, dinner! I really, really am missing all my friends in NYC, so I decided to have a NYC-inspired meal! I remember having my 1st falafel with my friend T, on the Upper West Side, near Columbia. Falafel is King in NYC, with food trucks all over Manhattan serving up these delectable, deep-fried chickpea balls. Well, needless to say, I baked mine, and made them super yummy and tummy friendly!

yummy falafel burger!

1 can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed
3 garlic cloves
1/2 red onion
big handful cilantro
~1 Tbsp fresh parsley (or more if you love parsley, I don’t)
juice of 1 1/2 lemons
1 tsp EVOO
1 tsp cumin
big pinch of salt & pepper
2 Tbsp oat flour
1 egg

Put all those into a food processor and combine. Then, on an olive-oil-sprayed baking sheet, divide the “batter” into 4 patties. (Don’t try to shape them with your hands, it won’t work…I used a 1/3 cup measuring cup.) Place in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes, flipping half way through.  I finished them off on a frying pan (sprayed with olive oil), and they got a nice crust on them, but 3 of 4 broke when I went to flip. Try this at your own risk! :)


While your patties are baking, make your tahini sauce. Tahini is a middle eastern condiment, that is made of ground up sesame seeds. It’s sesame seed paste, but more “liquidy.” This sauce is AMAZING on the falafel, not so much on its own. Something fabulous happens to it when you pair it with the chickpeas. Trust me.

1 Tbsp Tahini
1 small grated garlic clove
1/2 tsp grated onion
1/2 tsp minced parsley
juice of 1 lemon
water to thin out…about 2 Tbsp

Stir those all together. It won’t taste great on its own, but slathered on the burger, it is spectacular. I promise! PS, this doesn’t make very much– enough for 3-4.

bright and refreshing with the dill & cucumber!

With this burger, I served a fantastic, cool cucumber salad. This salad is actually meant to go in the burger when you eat it! You see, falafel is traditionally served in a pita, so the salad can nestle right inside the pocket. But, since my falafel was in burger form, I served the salad on the side.

1/2 cucumber, peeled and seeded
red pepper, diced
2 Tbsp red onion, minced
handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt & pepper
1 1/2 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped

Combine, chill, and enjoy!

fresh & crunchy salad!

I really enjoyed this meal. My dad liked it, but wanted more “meat.” But for my tastes, it was delicious. It had a fresh, middle eastern flare with the cilantro and the parsley. I love the combination of the nutty tahini sauce with the bright, creamy burger, and the cool, refreshing tomatoes and cucumber. Finally, there were great textures going on here. The temperature differences between the burger and the salad, and then the bright, crunchiness of the salad was just superb.

unbelievably fantastic! and low fat!

Back to dessert — there’s something so satisfying about banana bread. It’s “homey,” rich, moist, and in this case, chocolatey! What’s not to love?! And this recipe is low in fat and rich in flavor! Guilt-free!

Until tomorrow!