June 10, 2016


Mary Beth Johnson is a wife and mum to four schooners, as she's dubbed her children. On a normal afternoon, you would find her in moccasins, skinny jeans and a comfortable tee, camera in hand. Recently moving to the suburbs of Atlanta, Mary Beth spends her days homeschooling, sneaking away to the bookstore, trying to act the part of a southerner, and sifting through recipes in The Vegetarian Times. Food is her love language.

I tried to go completely gluten-free this week and lasted a whopping 48 hours. When you think it won't be that difficult and then you start noticing alllllll the things in your pantry that you can't eat, the struggle becomes real.

On the night I gave it up I was making pasta for the rest of the family and accidentally tasted a noodle to see if it was done and then it was just a downward spiral from there. I ended the night overdosing on penne mixed with basil pesto and blackened chicken. There are worse things in life, I tell myself. ;)

If I were to try it again it would be with more research. I needed ideas for on-the-go breakfasts, the best gluten-free breads, and how to not eat so much bacon. I did manage to play around in the kitchen doing some baking and came up with a gluten-free banana bread adapted from Some Kitchen Stories. "Caramelized" was in the title and that completely intrigued me. You can make this with all-purpose flour or a gluten-free blend, whichever suits you and your needs best. Either way, make it. You'll love it.



 Bread 4 TBSPs of butter, softened and divided 
3/4 Cup of packed dark brown sugar, or coconut sugar
 3 Medium-sized, ripe bananas, sliced 
1/2 Cup buttermilk (you can make your own by adding 1/2 tsp lemon juice to your milk and letting it sit for 5 minutes before adding to your batter) 
3 TBSPs of canola oil 
2 TBSPS of amber or gold rum 
2 Large eggs 
2 cups (or just a smidgeon less) all-purpose flour (or your favorite gluten-free blend) 
3/4 Teaspoon of baking soda
 1/2 Teaspoon of salt 

 1/3 Cup of powdered sugar 
2 Teaspoons of Half and Half 

Make bread: 
 Preheat oven to 350°. Grease and flour a 9x5-inch metal loaf pan. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add brown sugar and bananas; sauté 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool 10 minutes. Place banana mixture in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Combine buttermilk and next 3 ingredients (through eggs). Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Add flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately to banana mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; beat at low speed just until combined. Scrape batter into greased loaf pan coated and bake at 350° for 1 hour, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Cool for 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Remove bread from pan, and cool on wire rack. 

  Make glaze: 
 Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a small, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook 3 minutes or until butter begins to brown; remove from heat. Add powdered sugar and half-and-half, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Drizzle glaze over bread. Let stand until glaze sets.