Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Breakfast to LIVE For: Banana Bread Cookies & The Best Coffee EVER

Monmouth Coffee & Warm Banana Bread to fight the cold!

My friend is having a party to raise funds for their annual Christmas party in support of the charity ATD Fourth World. While Toni's doing the DJing for the night, I'm joining the girls in the kitchen: gotta love bake sales! Having just recovered from cake-overload after this weekends trip to Brighton (fantastic vegan haven!), I opted for a more subtle option: banana bread.

Not just any banana bread though, Sweet Potato Banana Bread COOKIES! These little treats are great for breakfast on the go; baked with a sprinkle of sugar on top they satisfy your morning sweet tooth, but are still tame enough to go well with some Earth Balance on top (or better yet, coconut oil!).

One of these warm cookies, paired with a pipping hot Monmouth Coffee (Costa Rican blend), was the perfect breakfast to combat the freezing temperatures outside.

On a quick side note, if you're ever in London Monmouth Coffee is a MUST. Even if you think you don't like coffee, this place may change your mind. The baristas tend to be the best in their field and have been great in assisting me about the differences in their single roast origins beans (all fair-trade & organic). I go for the filter because you can really taste the unique flavors and appreciate the subtleties; unfortunately, I think my standards are a bit too high now for returning to Boston.

Sweet Potato Banana Bread Cookies


  • ½ cup, steamed & mashed sweet potato
  • ½ cup, mashed banana (or little less)
  • ¼ cup, vegan white sugar (or turbinado)
  • 1/3 cup, maple syrup
  • ½ cup, light brown sugar
  • 1 cup, veggie oil
  • 1 cornstarch "egg" (mix 2 tablespoon cornstarch + 2 tablespoon water)
  • 2 t, vanilla extract
  • 1 t, lemon juice
  • 2 cups, all-purpose flour
  • 2 t, baking powder
  • 2 t, ground cinnamon
  • 1 t, ground nutmeg
  • ½ t, salt
  • 1 ¼ t, baking soda
  • ¼ cup, pecans, crushed (optional but highly recommended)
  • ¼ cup, caramelized orange rinds (optional)
  • 2-4 T, turbinado sugar (for sprinkling)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine pumpkin, sugars, maple syrup, vegetable oil, cornstarch "egg", lemon juice, and vanilla extract and mix well. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
  3. Add flour mixture to liquid mixture and mix well. The consistency should be doughy and a bit sticky to work with: it may be easier to lightly oil your hands and “kneed” the dough lightly until combined. Don’t overmix.
  4. Add in crushed pecans and orange rinds, mixing well to combine.
  5. Using about a tablespoon worth of dough, roll dough into a ball with oiled hands. Place on the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies at least two inches apart. Using a lightly oiled fork, flatten the cookies out a bit (as they won’t expand sideways much in cooking). Again, this mixture is a bit sticky, but the end result is so worth it!
  6. Sprinkle the cookies with a bit of turbinado sugar and bake approximately10-15 minutes or until just firm. I found it best to take them out just over 10 minutes once the dough is formed and more longer sticky since they continue to cook a bit once out of the oven (and no one likes overcooked bread!). Enjoy!

This is closely adapted from my Pumpkin Cookies recipe, though the result is quite different. Next time, however, I'd like to adapt the recipe using whole wheat flour (we just ran out!): if anyone tries this let me know it goes


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