As a kid, I hated bananas. Unless they came in the form of banana Nerds. Or banana medicine. (The only way I’d agree to go to the doctor or hospital was if I thought there might be banana medicine in my future…)
As an adult, though, I’ve gained an appreciation for the banana. I’ll eat ‘em now. I’m still a little weird about them, though. I like them when there’s still a little green on the peel. I don’t like ripe bananas. Once they start getting brown spots, I’m out.
Right before no-sugar-Lent began, I got the strangest impulse to become a world-famous baker of scones. I have no idea why, since I’ve never really been a scone kind of girl, but I pinned about eight million different scone recipes, like, the day before Lent started. And then I had to wait 40+ days to find out if I did, indeed, have the knack of being a world-famous baker of scones.
After a week filled with Easter eggs and chocolates and jelly beans, though, I knew I had to get back on track with my healthy eating ways, or risk falling right off the wagon completely. That kind of threw a monkey wrench into my world-famous-scone-baker dreams. I couldn’t have those yummy baked goods kicking around, tempting me.
But I had, somewhere along the way, pinned a recipe from the Cookie & Kate website – a place where many delicious healthier recipes can be found – for Vegan Banana Nut Scones. Which seemed to coincide nicely with my need to get back on track food-wise, as well as with the two over-ripening bananas sitting on my kitchen counter…
A slightly healthier version of a scone? Two browning bananas that I didn’t know what to do with? A rainy Saturday morning without much else to do?
It was Vegan Banana Nut Scone time.
And oh.my.lawrd. these things were good!
You can find the original recipe that I derived from here, but I made a few tweaks to it (in fact, I’m not even sure if my end result could be called Vegan), and this is what my version looks like:
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup solid coconut oil
- ¾ cup mashed ripe banana (about 2 medium bananas)
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup maple syrup, more if needed
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the nuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Toast the nuts in the oven until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Chop the nuts into very fine pieces.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, ¾ths of the chopped nuts, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt in a bowl and whisk together.
- Use a pastry cutter or a fork to cut the coconut oil or butter into the dry ingredients.
- Pour the banana mixture into the dry mixture and combine with a big spoon. At first it will seem like there isn’t enough liquid to wet the dough, but keep mixing until you have thoroughly incorporated the wet and dry ingredients. You can use your hands to knead the last of the flour into the dough.
- On a flat lightly-floured surface, form dough into a circle that’s about an inch deep all around. Use a knife to cut the circle into 8 even slices.
- Separate slices and place on the baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake for 15 minutes to 17 or until lightly golden brown.
- While the scones are baking, whisk together the glaze ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. Let the scones cool for a few minutes, then drizzle the glaze generously over the scones. While the glaze is wet, sprinkle it with the remaining chopped nuts.
So. Here’s the deal with scones. The part that always scared me was the “cutting in the butter” part that seems to be a key component to making scones. I don’t have a pastry cutter, and I always thought that would be difficult to do without one. The fun part about this recipe is that it uses solid coconut oil instead, and that is WAY easy to cut into the flour with a fork.
For me, the star of the show here is the maple glaze. Oh.em.gee. It is soooooo delicious. I was worried after mixing it up at first that it was too thick, so I thinned it out with some extra maple syrup and a touch of almond milk. I should have left it thicker. Plus, I think I put it on the scones too soon after they came out of the over, because most of it ran off of them. (no biggie, I got to skim it all off the parchment paper with a spoon and send it directly into mah belly, which resulted in quite a little sugar buzz).
At the end of the day, I was shocked at how easy these were to whip up, and loved how wonderful my house smelled after they were done baking. The problem was that, of course, I have zero willpower, and by the end of the day, I had eaten three of them. THREE!!!!
Plans to further my dreams of being a world-famous-baker-of-scones are on hold, until I figure out what to do with my baked goods in the future. I can’t just have these floating around my house, even if they are semi-healthy and maybe-vegan.
The scones are not safe with me.
Not safe at all.