Banana-walnut, almond-cranberry bread is nutrient packed

No matter how hard I try, I never seem to be able to finish off a bunch of bananas before the last one starts to turn brown. When this happens, I toss it into the freezer. Eventually, I have three or four frozen browned bananas. What better way to use them then to make banana bread?

To kick it up a nutrient notch, I include dried cranberries and three kinds of nuts: almonds, walnuts and black walnuts. Of course, many of the nutrients are cooked out. But I’d like to think a dessert made without the traditional white flour and lots of different nuts is more healthful compared to store-bought brands.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the ingredients:

Dried cranberries: Dried cranberries have been linked to benefits like strengthening the immune system and battling against bacterial and viral infections.

Almonds: Almonds are a rich source of vitamin E, calcium, phosphorous, iron and magnesium. They also contain zinc, selenium, copper and niacin.

Walnuts: Walnuts have antioxidants, which protect cells against damage caused by harmful molecules known as free radicals. The damage can play a role in heart disease and other health conditions.

Black walnuts: Black walnuts are rich in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin C. They have been shown to help relieve colic and heartburn.

Nutrient-Packed Banana-Walnut, Almond-Cranberry Bread

1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ cups of tapioca flour
¼ cup black walnuts
½ cup of almonds, crushed
¼ cup dried cranberries
3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed

Preheat the oven to 350°F. With a wooden spoon, mix butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the sugar, egg and vanilla. Add the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix. Add the flour, mix. Add the walnuts, black walnuts and cranberries. Pour mixture into a buttered 4x8 inch loaf pan. Sprinkle the almonds on top. Bake for 1 hour. Cool on a rack. Let it sit for three hours. Remove from pan and slice to serve.

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