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I adore banana, I really do…but I have a problem with the texture. That claggy, glaggy throat-clogging texture drives me to distraction in a very bad way, and I find that I just can’t tolerate the fruit in its natural state. However, that certainly doesn’t stop me from enjoying it in any other way possible, which may explain why I am always on the lookout for new recipes to try this fruit in!
When my kid sister bought me this cookbook, I was immediately smitten with this recipe…though why I didn’t try it sooner is beyond me! It’s a very dense and heavy loaf cake, but has an inexplicably moist and delicate crumb that melts on the tongue and keeps you coming back for more.
Banana & Date Bread
(from Donna Hay Simple Essentials – Fruit)
125g unsalted butter, softened & cut into cubes
175g brown sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten together
200g all-purpose flour (recipe originally called for 225g)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarb soda (also known as baking soda)
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups mashed banana (make sure it’s well mashed)
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (not that horrid maple-flavoured syrup nonsense)
1 cup roughly chopped dried dates
1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C, lightly grease a small loaf tin and line with non-stick baking paper. Place the butter &sugar in a bowl and beat till pale and creamy. Gradually add the egg while beating, then beat to combine.
2. Sift together the flour, bicarb soda, baking powder, nutmeg and cinnamon twice to ensure the leaveners are not clumped together.
3. Add the chopped dates to the flour and stir well to ensure they’re well coated with flour (this prevents them from sinking to the bottom during baking)
4. Stir the sifted flour & dates into the creamed butter & eggs mixture.
5. Pour the maple syrup into the mashed bananas and mix, then add the bananas to the rest of the batter and lightly mix together (do not overwork as this will make the cake tougher, and you want a nice tender crumb for this cake)
6. Spoon into the lined loaf tin and bake for 70 minutes, or till a skewer inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.
Allow this loaf to cool completely before slicing as it has a very moist & delicate crumb, and if you attempt to slice it before it is cool, the sodding thing will fall apart! However, once it is cooled, slices do taste best when slightly warmed…though temperature won’t matter much when you give this a taste!
Even though I’ve dropped the amount of sugar in this recipe, it’s still quite a sweet treat so I highly recommend making a pot of unsweetened tea to accompany it.
Apologies for taking so long since my last update…I’m a bit bulldozed by things happening in my life at present and blogging has taken quite a back seat. However, hopefully things will begin to settle down soon 🙂
[tags]banana, dates, bread, cake, baking, recipes[/tags]