Banana Bread

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January 24, 2013 by dgarnett2013

Banana Bread: adapted from Nigella Lawson’s recipe in How to be a Domestic Goddess

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  • 130g sultanas or good raisins or a mixture of both
  • 50ml bourbon or dark rum
  • 175g plain flour – plus more for dusting the pan
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 125g unsalted butter, melted
  • 150g sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 small ripe, soft, darkly speckled bananas, mashed (about 300g when weighed without skin)
  • 30g walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 170 C/ gas mark 3,  and put oven rack to lower middle position.

Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5x3 inch loaf pan; dust with flour, and tap out excess (or use paper insert).

Put the sultanas with the rum or bourbon in a smallish saucepan and bring to the boil.

As soon as the alcohol bubbles, remove from the heat, cover and leave for an hour or so, until the sultanas have absorbed most of the liquid, then drain.

Spread the walnuts on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant, 5 to 10 minutes. Set aside to cool, then chop quite coarsely.

Put the flour, baking powder, bicarb and salt in a bowl and mix together.

In a large bowl (we use an electric mixer) beat together melted butter and sugar until well blended.

Beat in the eggs one at a time, then the mashed bananas.

With a wooden spoon, mix in the walnuts, drained sultanas and vanilla extract.

Add the flour mixture, a third at a time. Do not overmix.

Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan.

Bake until the loaf is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 55 minutes (but can take longer, depending on your oven and how full your tin, eg if you have used bigger bananas).

Leave in the tin to cool (for at least five minutes, or longer), then put on a rack.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

Made in winter when hit with a particular longing for Spring. Early summer flowers seem nothing short of miraculous.

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