Banana loaf... with raisins & chocolate chips...

The amount of times I have actually tried and make a good banana loaf. One that isn't too moist, doesn't look like under-baked and it's not too "heavy". I have tried to achieve the "perfect banana loaf" at least 5 times by now - each and every time I failed, at least that's how I look at it. But last weekend's bake surprised me, in a good way that is. Even though I had to change, improvise with the recipe a bit - as I didn't have the brazil nuts, nor any other nuts at home - I used raisins and dark chocolate chips instead. Thankfully, as I pretty much kept the right amount of ingredients etc. the loaf turned out great! Moist but not soggy, or with that weird under baked appearance. It was slightly crumbly and not "heavy" at all. Well present banana taste and raisins, as well as that dark chocolate chips, worked well brilliantly together :)

This recipe is definitely a keeper and the only one I will use from now on, especially if I see some dark, sad bananas sitting on my kitchen counter... ;) If you, like me, weren't very successful with your banana baked creations before, please don't give up yet, not until you try this one!

banana loaf

I'm right on track with my little baking project in regards to The Hummingbird Bakery cookbook "Home sweet home", as you can guess this is another recipe from that publication :)

How to make it...
- 100 g brazil nuts, roughly chopped (I substituted nuts for 60 g sultanas + 50 g dark chocolate chips)
- 200 g unsalted butter, soft + extra for greasing
- 300 g soft light brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 300 g plain flour + extra for dusting
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves (didn't have any...)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 ripe medium bananas

Preheat the oven to 170 C then grease the loaf tin with butter and dust with flour.
Spread the chopped Brazil nuts evenly over a baking tray. Toast the nuts in the oven for 5–10 minutes, checking often as they will colour quickly. Once toasted, remove and set aside to cool completely. Leave the oven turned on.
In a freestanding electric mixer with the paddle attachment or using a hand-held electric whisk, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well and scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients and 60 g of the toasted nuts. Add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture. Mix on a medium speed, making sure the ingredients are well incorporated. Mash the bananas in a bowl using a fork, then add to the batter and mix well. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin. Sprinkle the remaining toasted nuts over the top of the raw loaf. Bake for approximately 1–1¼ hours or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. If the top of the loaf is browning too quickly, cover with foil and continue to bake. Allow the loaf to cool a little before turning it out of the tin onto a wire rack to cool completely, then cut into slices to serve.


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