September 07, 2012

Scrummy Banana Bread with Maple Syrup and Pecans oh and a little chocolate too

As kids we made banana bread every chance we could get - I remember my baby brother even made it (well he wasn't a baby but he was quite young indeed).  Then in college it was the one thing that my flatmates (boys) made! And when I was living in Honduras we would stop every between our dives at Fish Quays for fish burgers (and the famous banana cake!) Oh I can taste it now!

It was always and still is one absolute favourite and so very very moorish especially with a little toasted pecans and  chocolate added to it of course!

So over the years the recipes have been quite the same  (for me anyway) bananas of course..... nuts of some sort (walnuts or pecans) and chocolate chips or chunks was and is a must! :)

So after coming across the lovely Joanne Wheatley's recipe  (Winner of Series 2 GBBOI couldn't resist trying and tweaking to put my spin on it all and now I have made it over and over for friends, family, summer fetes..... I tell you it is definitely one of the best base recipes I have come across for banana bread - so go on.... go get her book A Passion for Baking and adapt as you wish (or not as it is perfect the way it is too!)

Ingredients for my tweaked version - makes 4 mini loaves or one large loaf (in long bread tin)
100g demerara sugar (I think this is the secret ingredient!!)
150g soft light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 brown or almost brown bananas
280g plain flour
2tsp baking powder
140g unsalted butter melted
2tsp cinnamon (optional)

100g toasted pecans or walnuts (up to you)
100g bag of chocolate chips or chunks of baking chocolate (dark/milk your choice)
2 tablespoons of maple syrup (optional but oh does it taste delish!)

Preheat oven to 150degreeC fan oven (170degC convec/325degF)
Line your tin(s) with grease proof paper or spray with quick release spray.

Melt your butter over low heat and set aside to cool while you make the mix.

Whisk both sugars with the eggs  until combined. Mash the bananas up and add to the mixture.

Sift the flour and baking powder together into the mix and carefully fold until all ingredients are combined  (don't over mix)

Add the butter (don't worry too much if hasn't cooled completely).  Stir until combined.
Stir in your toasted pecans or walnuts, chocolate chips or chunks, cinnamon and 1 tbsp of maple syrup.
On the top of the mixture drizzle the remaining maple syrup on top and bake in oven for about 1 hour. Check after 40 minutes with a wooden skewer to see how it is doing in case your oven is hotter than mine or if you are making smaller versions they will take less time to bake.

Once wooden skewer comes out clean remove from oven and allow to cool (if you can!)

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