Friday, March 26, 2010

Today's Breakfast

I don't generally eat a big breakfast. I wake up hungry, but not ravenous. Something small usually does it for me, and since I often have stiffness and pain in the morning, it's all the nicer to have something simple.

One of my favorites when I don't happen to have whole wheat bread on hand (which I make myself) is banana toast. That's not toast with bananas on it, but rather sugar-free (and whole wheat) banana bread which has been toasted and spread with 50% calorie-reduced fat spread. I love this with 8 or 10 oz. of coffee with 1/3 of a cup of whole milk and one packet of Splenda. Toasting this makes it slightly crispy on the edges and tender in the center.

I adapted this recipe from a link I was given on Tea at Dusk.

Bread for Banana Toast:
  • 3 medium bananas (315 calories)
  • 1/2 cup plain low fat yogurt (77 calories)
  • 1 medium egg (63 calories)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (52 calories)
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil (120 calories)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla (12 calories)
  • 3/4 cup granular Splenda
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of (regular, not pastry) whole wheat flour (742 calories)
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder (12 calories)
total for entire loaf: 1393 calories

Place the bananas in a food processor or blender and blend them until liquefied. If you don't have either of these appliances, mash the bananas well with a fork. Add the yogurt, egg, vanilla, oil, and vegetable oil and blend again (or mix with a whisk) until everything is evenly mixed. Transfer the liquid ingredients to a large bowl and whisk in the Splenda granular, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. Add the whole wheat flour and gently moisten it with a spoon. Do not mix it well at this point. You only want to get it wet and then allow it to rest for 15 minutes to a half hour. You want to allow the flour to absorb the moisture more fully before baking. This is not essential, but it improves the texture of whole wheat baked goods made with relatively coarse flour.

While the batter is resting, prepare a loaf pan by spraying it with non-stick spray or greasing and flouring it. After the batter has rested, add the baking powder and stir sufficiently to mix it in. Don't stir more than necessary as you will work the gluten in the flour too much and the bread will be tough. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake at 350 degrees for between 45 minutes and an hour. When a toothpick or skewer inserted into the center comes out clean, it is done. Remove it from the oven and allow it to sit for 15 minutes in the pan. It will easily flip out of the loaf pan after this rest.

I also recommend allowing the bread to sit uncut overnight. This will make it easier to slice evenly as well as improve the texture. Whole wheat baked goods are often better after the moisture settles overnight.

The number of calories per serving depends on how many pieces you cut it into. I usually cut it into 10 (146 calories per slice), but some may find 8 to be a more satisfying serving size (183 calories per slice). I tend to decide based on how big the overall loaf seems to come out. If it feels small, I'll go for 8 slices. If it feels big, I'll go for 10.

coffee with whole milk = 44 calories
banana toast (8 cut) = 174 calories
fat spread = 20 calories
total: 238 calories

I took a Vitamin C supplement with this breakfast because I've been feeling tired. When I suddenly start to feel more tired than usual, it's generally because my body is trying to fight off a cold or virus. I don't take Vitamin C (in the morning) in addition to my daily multivitamin (at night) unless I'm feeling more fatigued than usual because I don't want to overload on C (as it can cause diarrhea and is a water-soluble vitamin that is wasted if you body can't use it).

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