December 18, 2013

White Chocolate Cranberry Banana Bread + Gift Idea

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I cannot believe how close Christmas is.

How on earth did time fly?  When I was younger, time seemed to crawl this time of year. Why is it when you get older, you want things to slow down, but life only seems to move faster?  It is becoming a problem.





Like, we haven't even decorated our tree (which we got a couple days ago thankyouverymuch)  Now that classes and stuff are over, we might have a chance since we won't be driving back and forth all the time. We'll see!  Although I am behind on decorating, I'm going my best to keep up with baking. I like the decorations, but my heart lies in the kitchen (not that that isn't obvious)
With so much ending this week, I decided to make loaves as Christmas gifts for teachers. While shopping for my brother (shhh!) at Walmart (okay, never mind, we don't have to be hush hush about Walmart ;) I found these mini loaf pans. Anything mini is automatically good in my book!  These are so cute and make perfect gifts, since most people don't need a whole loaf of bread for themselves, especially this time a year. 

In this post, I'm just going to share three quick and easy ideas for gifting bread. Emphasis on easy. :)

 
Option #1:  Burlap and Bow.  Wrap your loaf in saran wrap.  Cut a strip of wide burlap and wrap it around the saran wrapped loaf.  Place it in a clean foil pan.  Then place a bow of choice on top.  I didn't love the silver, because it looks blah with the foil and burlap, but it was all we had.  I recommend green (or pink!:)
 


 

Option #2:  Gold Bow Loaf.  For this one, I put the loaf back into the pan and wrapped it all in saran wrap.  Then I tied the ribbon around both sides.  This one is best for traveling and was my favorite.  I would've loved it more with some fun ribbon.

 
 
Option #3:  Red Ribbon Bow.  For this one, all I did was wrap the loaf in saran wrap.  Then I took a long strip of wide ribbon (red sparkles in this case) and tied a bow around the loaf of bread.  I also stuck a little note under the now. This one was the cutest, but colorful ribbon makes all the difference!
 
 
 
 
  
The banana bread is the recipe for my crazy good chocolate chip banana bread, which is soft and moist and sweet thanks to the bananas and greek yogurt. This time, I subbed white chocolate for the chocolate chips and added cranberries. This banana bread recipe is my favorite and one I actually come back to again and again.  As a food blogger, there aren't very many recipes that get made more than once.  Christmas time brings out all the stand byes. There is no time to be wasted on a recipe that might not work, especially when you are giving them as gifts or hosting a dinner. I'm so glad I can still enjoy most of the Christmas meals without having to prep!  I leave the meats and casseroles to the aunts and just bake the banana bread and tie ribbon. :)
 
 
White Chocolate Cranberry Banana Bread
Recipes Source: The Sweet {Tooth} Life.  Adapted from here.
Yield: 3 mini loaves (or one normal loaf)

1/4 cup butter, softened
2 eggs 
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup plain greek yogurt (I used nonfat)
1 cup mashed ripe banana (I used 3 medium)
1-1/2 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
3/4 cup cranberries
 
Beat softened butter and eggs together.  Stir in yogurt, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and mashed banana and beat until smooth.  Add flour, salt, and soda and whisk until just combined.  Divide between three greased and floured mini loaf pans.  Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes in pan before removing and letting cool on a wire rack.  After cooled, slice and enjoy or wrap up and gift!  Loaves can also be frozen. 

24 comments:

  1. Homemade treats are some of my favorites. You wrapped a perfect, edible package!

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    1. Thank you Erin! I agree, homemade gifts are always the best!

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  2. I love making homemade edible gifts..love the packaging you used! I am sure that your teachers loved them too!

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    1. I would love a gift like your cookie mix! :) Thanks Meghan!

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  3. These look so pretty! I give baked goods as gifts for most of my presents but am terrible about wrapping them. These look so pretty and have given me the best ideas. Thanks lady!

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    1. I'm glad they helped as inspiration! You are so creative, I bet yours are super festive!

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  4. Shhhh, don't talk about how close we are to Christmas!! It freaks me out. Thanks for the very pretty packaging ideas though. I will need them because I have yet to shop so I am beginning to think I will just bake for everyone on my list :P

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    1. I'm not ready either! I don't think anyone will complain if you make them baked goods!

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  5. These are so cute Mary Frances! And I'm glad we're not the only ones who just gt our tree and haven't decorated it yet...:) It's hard to nail all my siblings down to do something....we're rarely all at home at the same time.:)

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    1. Yes! I told Mom that as we have gotten older, we have gotten worse at keeping traditions:)

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  6. What a wonderful gift for my teaches! And the wrap looks lovely too! And so does the banana bread itself! Greek yogurt? I'm in. And you added white chocolate too... oh well, do you want me to drool all over my keyboard? ; )

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    1. Haha, I appreciate the compliment! Your keyboard probably doesn't:) Thanks Consuelo!

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  7. Absolutely beautiful, girly! Pictures, gifts, the bows- So cute!! and the white chocolate and cranberries? Yum.

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  8. Dear Mary Frances, This is a wonderful idea for presents. It is a personal and heartfelt gift. This is giving from the heart.
    blessings dear. Catherine xo

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  9. Whoa. This bread sounds absolutely amazing! I never would have thought to put cranberries and bananas together, but I bet its delicious!

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  10. I love these ideas for gifting bread! So cute and pretty! And what a great recipe!

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  11. Now I know this bread has to be good with bananas and all that Greek yogurt! I hear you about never using the same recipe twice often as a food blogger, but when you find a good one, you repurpose it many different ways! Your bread is packaged up so beautifully -- I'm sure the recipients loved it!

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    1. Thanks Marcie! It is so true, once you find a recipe good enough to repeat, you KNOW it is a good one!

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  12. I love the idea of a festive banana bread, it sounds delicous! Visiting from Sweet and Savoury Sunday. Merry Christmas! Laura@baking in pyjamas

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to comment Laura! Wishing you a Merry Christmas!

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