Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Healthy Holiday Makeover, Part 1

 I am usually a traditionalist when it comes to holiday baking.  Every year I make lemon squares, butter tarts and shortbread.  This year, in light of my recipe makeovers, I thought I would try something a little different.  

And in the spirit of holiday giving, you are getting two recipes today for the price of one! :)

For the first recipe, I came across this and used it as inspiration.  I swapped the butter for bananas and replaced the raspberry jam with chocolate chips.  For a first attempt, not too bad.  The coconut-banana-chocolate combination is a true winner.  On the down side, the crust turned out a little tougher than I would like.  I may under cook it next time.  Enjoy!


Coconut Banana Bars (Makes 30 bars)

1 cup banana, mashed (about 2 ripe bananas)
1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
1/4 cup wheat bran
3/4 cup light coconut milk
 2 flax eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 pkg unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9x13 pan.

Mash bananas with a fork.  Add flour, bran and coconut milk.   Mix until combine and spread batter into pan (if it seems a bit to thick, add a few more tablespoons of milk).

Bake crust for 15-20 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Cream sugar with the flax egg.  Add the coconut and chocolate chips.  Spread coconut mixture over crust and bake for 20-25 minutes.  Allow to cool and cut into squares.

Nutritional Information (Approx.)
85 calories
2.6 fat
15 g carbs
1.6 g protein
1 g fibre

For the second recipe, I was inspired by Oh She Glows and Angela's delicious blondies.  I couldn't find any candy canes anywhere, so I improvised.  I doubled the recipe and gave it my own twist, replacing the Earth Balance with applesauce and walnuts with almonds.  These are fantastic!  The combination of mint and white chocolate reminds me of the peppermint bark that I so love.  These are my new holiday favourites and I hope you like them too!

Peppermint Almond Blondies (Makes 50)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
1/2 cup wheat bran
3 tsp baking powder
2 flax eggs
I cup brown sugar
1 cup applesauce
2 tsp peppermint extract
2 tbsp coconut milk
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup scotch mints, cut in half

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease 2 8 inch pans.

Combine flour, bran and baking powder.  In a separate bowl, mix flax egg, sugar, applesauce, extract and milk.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined.
Add chocolate chips, almonds and mints.

Divided batter into pans and bake for 35-40 minutes.  Allow to cool and cut into squares.

Nutritional Information (Approx.)
52 calories
1.8 g fat
8.3 g carbs
1 g protein
1 g fibre

Stay tuned for Part 2 tomorrow!

Stay Healthy,

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