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Tuesday 16 April 2013

Baking for Beginners: Banana, Date and Walnut Bread

Baking inspiration can come from many places, sometimes it's spotting something incredible in a bakery window, sometimes a book you're reading like Laura's gorgeous mini apple apple pudding loaves or as in my case an unexpected windfall of bananas at the supermarket Reduced section.

Banana bread is my favourite use of ripe bananas; it's a cake that masquerades as bread so you can kid yourself that it's like having a banana and slice of toast and make it the best breakfast ever.  I've added dried dates that are sticky and sweet like little dollops of toffee and some crunchy walnuts, I'm pretty sure this must count as at least some of your five a day....

Banana, date and walnut bread (makes 1 loaf)
You will need:
  • 190g unsalted butter, melted
  • 190g caster sugar
  • 2 x caps vanilla extract
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 40ml milk
  • 4 ripe bananas, mashed (ones with lots of brown speckles on their skins)
  • pinch salt
  • 300g self raising flour
  • 100g chopped dates
  • 50g chopped walnuts
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
Make it!
  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas mark 4 and grease a large loaf tin (mine is 25cm x 13cm x 8cm). Beat together the butter, sugar, vanilla, eggs, maple syrup and milk really well using an electric whisk for about 2 minutes then fold in the bananas.
  2. In a separate bowl combine the remaining ingredients and mix well then gently fold them into the wet mixture.
  3. Pour the mixture into the loaf tin and bake for about 80 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the tallest point of the cake. If the top is starting to get too brown just cover with tin foil and continue to cook. Once ready allow to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes so it's easier to remove from the tin then transfer to a wire rack.


  1. Mmmm. The ONLY thing over-ripe bananas should be used for!

    1. And DIY banana and honey face packs, eat cake and get beautified at the same time

  2. I think I'd get confused between cake mix and face pack and the whole thing would end up an inevitable but delicious mess

    1. Facepacks you can eat are a good thing


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