Friday, 23 September 2011

Banana Bread

Sous Chef J was delighted to get a SUSTRANS leaflet through the post about Free Range Kids.  In it he quickly spotted a Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe for Banana Bread and, eyeing up the spotty bananas on the windowsill, he asked if we could bake it.  Taking a look at the ingredients, I agreed, although we did have to swap the apricots in the recipe for dates... and, of course, the self raising flour was substituted by Dove's Farm Gluten Free Self Raising Flour.
With Sous Chef J firmly in charge, preparation commenced.  He got the ingredients together and weighed out the things that were needed. So, we assembled 75g sultanas, one lemon, 100g soft unsalted butter, 125g sugar (recipe says caster, we had granulated), 2 large eggs, 3 large ripe bananas, 200g self raising flour (we used Dove's Farm Gluten Free Self Raising) and 75g dried dates (although recipe says ready to eat apricots!).

Then Sous Chef J moved onto the task of making the dates the same size as sultanas... but was surprisingly adept at the task and completed it without a moan!

The sultanas and dates were placed into little pots (a la MasterChef) and I was told to cream the butter and sugar.  Next an egg was added to the butter/sugar mix and combined well before repeating with the remaining egg.  At this point, the dried fruit and lemon zest were added and mixed in.
Sous Chef J then mashed the three bananas and added them to the mix.  Finally, the sifted Gluten Free Self Raising flour was carefully combined using a metal spoon. 
Next, the whole lot was added to the lined loaf tin and placed in the pre-heated oven.  As we were cooking other things in the oven, the temperature was higher (at 180ºC) than the recipe's stated 160ºC so we have a rather more brown outer loaf than would be expected!

Mmmmm... lovely Banana Bread
We checked it after 50 minutes but returned it for another 15 minutes as the inserted knife came out with cake mix on... then checked again, repeating until the knife blade came out clean.  In the end it was baked for about an hour and a quarter.  It was cooled in the tin for 15 minutes, then turned onto a wire cooling rack.

Delicious!  And well worth the wait.

Update - 7 October
Today we found ourselves with three VERY ripe bananas so Sous Chef J thought another batch of Banana Bread would be a good way to use them up.  I had other ideas and convinced him to try making muffins instead.  So, we agreed on a mix of muffins and mini muffins. The mix was shared between 12 muffin cases and 6 mini muffin cases.  The mini muffins were cooked for about 10 minutes, whereas the muffins took around 20 minutes.  Here are some pictures to show the results.
These are some ready to be frozen as we like to be prepared with Gluten Free goodies!


  1. Glad to see you do as you are told by sous chef J, who is obviously the real boss :-)

  2. It is becoming increasingly evident that Sous Chef J has management tendencies... he certainly likes to project manage the 'team'!! L

  3. They look scrummy! Well done to Sous Chef J :-)

  4. Thanks Liz... can confirm the banana muffins were a big breakfast success! Phew.