I hate to waste food and often have squishy, overripe bananas that need eating up, so banana bread is the perfect solution – at least that’s my excuse. If I’m heading out for a long day hike or run, I often pack a couple of slices as it’s a good high energy snack that keeps me going, as its relatively high in carbs and I find it easier on my stomach than energy gels or bars. I’ve tried various banana bread recipes over the years and tweaked this one from my Vegetarian Pocket Bible Book. Sorry about the pictures – I’m no food photographer!
2 or 3 ripe bananas – the more bananas you use the more moist and heavy the bread
140g self-raising flour or you could try wholemeal flour and add an extra tsp baking powder
140g unsalted butter
Good pinch of salt
Half tsp ground nutmeg (you can leave this and cinnamon out if you prefer)
Half tsp cinnamon
100g sugar – caster or brown sugar works
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp baking powder (or 2 tsp if you’ve not used self-raising flour)
75g chopped walnuts
50g dark chocolate chips – or just chop up a bar of chocolate
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180/200C and grease a loaf tin. My oven is a bit rubbish so it needs a higher temperature
2. Mash the bananas
3. Cream the sugar and butter until smooth, and then gradually add the flour (sieved) and eggs into the mixture. Add the baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg, raisins, nuts and chocolate. Give it a good mix and prepare to lick the bowl.
4. Transfer to the loaf tin and bake for 45 to 60 minutes. The bread is cooked when the top feels springy and a knife poked in the middle of the bread comes away clean. Leave in the tin for half an hour and then remove and cool on a wire rack – or cut a chunk off and serve with salted caramel ice cream.