The last piece of advice I learned firsthand last weekend when I attended my 30th (gasp! Yes... 30th) High School Reunion.
We were the Class of '83, a time when Swatch's were used to tell time not cell phones, when The Moonwalk was cooler than Twerking, and when no one knew who Anakin Skywalker was but we all wanted an Ewok for a pet.
1983 also brought a young Tom Cruise to the scene in Risky Business, an awesome Vacation with Clark Griswald, and a flood of tears when watching Aurora in Terms of Endearment. And "What a Feeling" it was to see Jennifer Beals in Flash Dance (yes... I had a shirt just like hers!). I also wanted one of those Vegemite Sandwiches from a land "Down Under", and I really wanted to know... who was Billy Jean?
In any case... we've all come a long way, and what it treat it was to see nearly half of my graduating high school class. With 30 years passing, those name tags really did come in handy as we all tried to covertly peek (not so easy without putting on those reading glasses we didn't want anyone to know we use) so we didn't seem to have forgotten anyone.
The girls were gorgeous and the men handsome as ever, and for the most part friends picked up where they left off at the last reunion. At this point in our lives most of us are comfortable in our own skin and just happy to see old friends. Laughter could be heard the whole night through and many of us had a hard time saying goodnight.
All this is a testament to our incredible reunion committee. Putting in months of work so the rest of us could fly in at the last minute to enjoy a wonderful evening, the committee put together an incredible event.
|Friends for over 35 years... Love you Suzanne!!|
And comfortable is exactly how this bread will make you feel. Bringing the soothing flavors of fall, this Banana Apple Spice Bread studded with soft chunks of cinnamony apple will leave you with a smile on your face and a friend in anyone you choose share it with.
Banana Apple Spice Bread
With both kids asking for seconds, this sweet bread ranked an immediate hit. Moist and with a tender crumb, I love the whole grains giving it substance, the fall-flavored spices are just a bonus!
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup oat bran
1/4 cup ground flax meal
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp apple pie spice *
5 Tbs oil (I like avocado oil... but any oil you like will do)
1/3 cup brown sugar
5 Tbs milk (we use rice milk)
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 medium sized over ripe bananas, mashed
2 medium sized apples, peeled, cored and chopped
Raw sugar to sprinkle on top
Preheat oven to 350º. Prepare a loaf pan with cooking spray and a sprinkle of Vanilla Sugar (or plain sugar). (Pour a few teaspoons of sugar into the pan and tip the pan to spread the sugar evenly... the sugar brings a nice "crunch" to the loaf!)
In a large bowl add the flour, bran, flax, baking powder and spices. Whisk to combine.
In a medium bowl, add the oil and brown sugar and give it a good whisk to combine. Add the eggs, whisking again to combine well. Add the milk and vanilla, once again whisking well. Stir in the mashed banana.
Sprinkle the chopped apples over the dry ingredients, then pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir gently, just until barely combined.
Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan (or mini loaf pans, or muffin tins) and sprinkle with raw sugar (1 - 2 Tbs), then place the pan into the hot oven. Bake until the bread is golden brown on top and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and tip onto a wire rack to cool. Slice and serve!
Approximate baking times:
Full size loaf pan - about 50 minutes
3 mini loaf pans - about 25 to 35 minutes
muffins - about 20 minutes (may be 15 -25 depending on the size of your tins)
Note times may vary depending on the size of your pans... keep an eye on the bread as it bakes making sure not to overcook.
* Liv Life Note: If you don't have apple pie spice, substitute 3/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/8 tsp ginger, 1/8 tsp allspice and a pinch of cardamom.
|Class of 1983|