Gluten Free Chocolate Banana Bread

December 25, 2020


To Prepare

Wash your hands.

Pour some Cocoa powder into a bowl. Recall that this is no regular cocoa powder, but a dark rich witch’s brew that Jess sent you some months ago. It clings to every surface in a three foot radius but when you lick your fingers they taste implausibly like your protean memories of hot chocolate, as though they were coated in the platonic ideal of cocoa which needs neither sweetener nor perceiver to fully exist. Anyway this is why you just washed your hands, and now you’ll have to do it again.

Add some sugar. I know we just made some wild claims about this cocoa but they were probably untrue, so like, add a substantial amount of sugar.

Add salt and baking soda in reasonable amounts.

At this point I really like to add almond flour and/or some delicious wheat flour. Consider your purpose in life: Are you actually making a gluten free flourless chocolate cake, or are you just making cake? What is the nature of cake? How hard is it to live truly free? Piece of cake! Less almond flour than sugar, and less wheat flour than almond, if you’re going to do it.

Combine dry ingredients.

Add a splash of vanilla, or probably it wouldn’t matter if you didn’t.

Recall that you meant to start to melting the coconut oil by now and quickly put some into a small pot on medium-low heat. I guess butter would be fine, but for some reason I love the flavor of coconut oil with chocolate.

Recall your mother teaching you to separate egg whites and yolks using the cracked half-shell of the egg itself. This was a valuable life lesson in dexterity, resourcefulness, economy of effort, and care.

Ask yourself how many eggs those flourless chocolate cake recipes called for, but unable to dredge a number up through the sands of time conclude that 3-4 is probably a great number for many things in life.

Plop the yolks into the bowl with the dry ingredients and reserve the whites into a separate bowl. I’ve been using 3-4 eggs depending on their size and whether or not I used wheat flour which is the only other binding / gluey agent.

Turn off the heat under the coconut oil, it’s nearly melted by now.

Add some confectioners sugar to the egg whites. I have no idea why, but I assume it helps them to achieve their destiny.

Whisk the egg-whites. Vaguely recall that the recipes said “until stiff.” When your wrist gets tired recall that your immersion blender totally has a whisk attachment! Assemble the whisk attachment and ask yourself if it maybe needs to be glued together in at least one place. After some disappointingly small motions and a couple of surprising splashes conclude that yes, your whisk attachment seems in need of some glue.

Continue whisking the egg whites by hand. Use your other hand. You like to consider yourself reasonably ambidextrous but in this setting you seem to have one adult hand and one toddler’s hand. Switch back do your dominant hand, paying more careful attention to how you even hold the whisk. Keep switching back and forth as your hands tire, trying to convince yourself that your other hand is getting better at an acceptable rate.

Whisk the egg whites until they’re stiff, or at least until they’ve changed texture and are fully aerated and thicker and anyhow you’re almost perspiring; Is this why people invented those geared hand-crank egg beaters? To make flourless chocolate cake from half-remembered recipes on the internet? Sounds like the Victorian era.

Combine everything, stirring into a fairly stiff dough. Add chocolate chips. I know they’re not even in the ingredients list, but let’s be honest: add chocolate chips. I’ve been using a some pretty dark ones around 70% which seems to approximately match the chocolate and sweetness level of the cake itself. I guess you should be careful of any potential mismatches between the chocolate profile of your cocoa powder and of your chips, you wouldn’t want to mess up the whole thing at the last minute after all that whisking you just did.

Bake at 177 for 50 - 80 minutes until a knife comes out clean. Did I tell you that my oven just woke up one morning in celsius, like the tame version of a Franz Kafka novel? So anyway turns out 177 C = 350 F.

To be honest I think it works nearly as well if you just plop the eggs in whole.

Shown here: almond flour but no real flour

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