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Apr 03

Banana Bread with Hazelnut Spread

 

 

Banana Bread

 

 

Banana bread, that oh-so awesome teatime treat that makes your house smell like heaven.

The midnight baking itch came over me again last night, so at 2 a.m this baby was created. It’s the first time in many many months I have felt like getting up and baking something just for the heck of it.

It has seriously been a challenging year for us, as I have mentioned before in earlier posts, and I guess sometimes when things like this happen, when life throws you a sudden curve ball, it throws you for six and inspiration in the kitchen simply takes a backseat. Nothing I looked at or touched seemed to generate any culinary ideas. My digital camera sat neglected for many months and when I did pick it up the pictures it took were just as uninspiring as how I felt inside. Dead.

 

So I was pleasantly surprised a couple days ago when R returned from the grocery store with a bunch of bananas and I actually got all excited about them. Usually the bananas are eaten as is or given to the dog as a healthy snack (coz he is always hungry and the vet insists he only have fruits or veggies for snacks). But that day I immediately began to think about all the wonderful things I could do with them … banana pancakes, smoothies, banana cream pie. And then at 2 a.m I had settled on a simple yet satisfying banana loaf; keeping it classic. Usually walnuts would be added but since this was ad-hoc baking, and given the late hour, I did without. Not a big fan of nuts anyway unless it is candied pecans, my new favourite cake topping {Applesauce Autumn Cake with Candied Pecans}.

 

 

Banana Bread

1¾ cups self-raising flour

¼ cup plain flour

pinch of salt

2/3 cups light brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

50 g melted butter

150 mls milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 whole eggs , lightly beaten

2 bananas, mashed

 

This recipe I got off my favourite go-to website for all things sweet and cakey ~ Taste.com.au. I used to buy tons of foodie magazines every time I walked by a news stand or a bookshop until I realized that every recipe found in those glossy pages end up on this website anyway, minus the annoying adverts.

Don’t get me wrong tho, I still buy glossy foodie magazines, just not the Australian ones. Now I totally obsess over the ones from the UK that don’t appear on a nice consolidated food website featuring all the recipes under one convenient web address. R. is less than thrilled.

 

 

Anyway, this recipe is so easy you won’t even need a machine to help whip this up. The banana loaf itself is dense and no creaming of butter + sugar is required. Simply place all dry ingredients in a bowl and the wet ingredients in another. Melt the butter and allow to cool slightly before using. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and to this add the milk, melted butter, eggs, vanila extract and mashed bananas. Stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until just combined. Then spoon into a loaf tin that’s been lined with baking paper. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180ºC for about 40 – 50 mins. Your house will smell divine!

 

 

Banana Bread2 (640x426)

 

 

Now, in my house cake is eaten warm when it is fresh out of the oven. No one waits for cake to cool down or anything. I have always liked warm cake even as a child but this cake certainly tastes better when it is served at room temperature. I did attempt to eat it warm but it did not feel nice. After I let it cool completely overnight at room temp I felt like the cake relaxed a bit and the flavours really came out after. The texture was really moist that even after three days it was just as good as the first day I cut into it.

 

I thought about frosting but in the end I went with hazelnut spread to compensate for the lack of a nutty flavour. A brilliant pairing, if I do say so myself. The boyfriend wanted a more citrusy topping like a lemon glaze but I stuck to my guns and insisted the hazelnut spread was really what the cake needed. I lied of course. The cake needed no such thing, it was perfect as it is. I just happened to notice a jar of hazelnut spread sitting on my kitchen window sill and I just had to have it on cake. R. doesn’t need to know any of this, by the way.

 

 

Banana Bread1 (640x426)

 

 

Be sure to cut the cake into thick sandwich-like slices and smear with the chocolate hazelnut spread … yum yum yum. They say hazelnut spreads have calcium in it … so I am going to believe them (blindly) and have more on my cake. Recently I also came across a sandwich spread with a cookie flavour. TO DIE FOR!! Dutch people and their sugar high breakfasts, haha. But this Speculos cookie flavoured sandwich spread can be used in other baking escapades in future. I am thinking spiced cookie buttercream icing for cupcakes, or as a filling in sweet turnovers. We’ll see. But for now please enjoy this recipe and share the results with friends and family. Goodluck in the kitchen!

 

 

~ Enjoy! ~

 

 

 

 

Permanent link to this article: http://foodflurries.com/sweet/banana-bread-with-hazelnut-spread

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