To me, banana bread has the headiest, most irresistible scent in the world of cooking and baking. It might even overtake rosemary… but that would be a close call.
This is my first go at making it, but it definitely won’t be the last as I am overwhelmed by variations of the recipe that I want to try! Plus, it is so, so easy and cheap to make.
Here are some of my ideas:
- Banoffee bread
- Pineapple topping (dried)
- Chocolate (although I do usually believe that chocolate and fruit should stay away from each other. Once you think Nutella your mind plays tricks on you to make it happen)
- Fresh strawberries or blueberries in the Summer
- Butterscotch chips
- Apple juice to add moisture and make a healthier loaf…
The sorry thing is that I could go on!
Anyway, this in no way means that the ingredients I have chosen for this particular banana bread are not heavenly and delectable. Using macadamia nuts and coconut was at the top of my ideas list, but now of course it has been crossed off! Substitute whatever nuts you like, though I would suggest macadamias or brazils for a slightly tropical feel like this one has. I chose sweetened flaked coconut and scattered it over the top of the loaf before baking, to give an ‘almost icing’. I also didn’t want to confuse the textures in the main body of the bread.
Cuts into 8 (as marked by banana chips!)
- 3 ripe bananas, peeled
- 150g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 140g butter, softened
- 250g plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 100g halved macadamias (bashed or whizzed into smaller pieces, if you like)
- sweetened coconut flakes, to scatter
- 8 dried banana chips, to mark portions
- Preheat the oven to 180°c and line a 2lb loaf tin with baking parchment.
- In a large bowl, mash the bananas and the sugar with a potato masher. And the eggs and mix well to incorporate fully, then add the butter and do the same. Add the flour and baking powder and again, mix until everything is well combined. Tip in the macadamias and mix once more before pouring it into the loaf tin. Shake over some sweetened coconut flakes for a lovely texture, and mark 8 portions, each with a dried banana chip.
- Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and a half (mine took 1 hour 10 minutes) until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack.
Leftovers will keep for 3-4 days in an airtight container 🙂
A final word is that, when searching for banana bread recipes, I noticed wide variations in the amounts of ingredients used. Some people used 2 bananas and no sugar, while others used 4 bananas and 250g! It is all about taste, so go by how much your sweet tooth nags you. I found 150g to be just fine. And I ate mine with butter. Mmm!!!