What’s a girl to do when there are a couple of black bananas sitting in the fruit bowl and a bevy of fruit flies hovering overhead? Why, make banana bread of course!
To be honest, I haven’t had much luck when it comes to banana loaf recipes. Time and again they ended up being mushy and under-cooked in the middle. There’s only so much failure you can take, so after I hurled the last one out on the lawn for the birds, I vowed my banana loaf baking days were over.
But, I’m nothing if not persistent and so when I saw these bananas that needed using, I thought ‘what the hell, let’s try again’. This time though I opted for a banana bread recipe (thanks to Chelsea Sugar) rather than a banana-laden dessert loaf. And, halleluia, this time we had lift-off! The only slight change I’ve made is to reduce the sugar a bit after it was suggested it was slightly too sweet.
The beauty of this banana bread is that you can cut and eat it (even toast it) like bread, yet it’s still moist and cake-like in texture. Slathered with butter, it’s perfect for that mid-morning (or mid-afternoon, after-dinner, or midnight!) snack. Best of all, it’s dead easy – no muss, no fuss. Enjoy!
BANANA & WALNUT BREAD
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup caster sugar, superfine
- 2 eggs
- 2 very ripe bananas, mashed with a fork
- 1 cup milk, can use buttermilk
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Optional: 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- Preheat oven to 180°C (360°F). Grease and line a 25cm (10 inch) loaf pan (mine was 22 x 12cm) with baking paper.
- Place butter and sugars into a bowl of an electric mixer (or you can use hand held electric beaters) and beat until pale and creamy.
- Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Beat in the mashed bananas, then add in the milk (I suggest you add about 3/4 of the milk at this stage and see whether more is needed once everything is added) and beat on low till just combined.
- In a bowl, sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt together. Add to the batter mixture, along with the walnuts, and beat on low (or fold) until just combined (don't over-mix).
- Pour batter into prepared loaf pan, and bake for 1 hour (start checking from 50 minutes) or until a skewer comes out clean. The top will crack – that's completely normal. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then remove, peel off the baking paper, and allow to cool completely.
- To serve, cut into thick slices and spread generously with butter.