Thursday, 7 April 2011

:: Megann's Best Ever Banana Bread ::

Megann’s Banana Bread
:: Megann’s Kitchen ::

Yes, everyone has a recipe out there that they are good at or that everyone asks for or requests to be baked. Most men have specialty spaghetti bolognaise that they whip up in times of need. My friend Heidi’s mum, Lynette, has her incredible & delectable fudgy chocolate cake that she is famous in her community for. If this particular cake had ever passed your lips you would certainly know about it! For my mum, it’s her delicious Southern Pecan Pie. But for me, it has to be my lowly old country style Banana Bread.
I have always loved banana bread, but my pursuit to perfect the recipe came during my pregnancy when I craved it beyond words. I poured over recipe books, reforming them to find the ideal one. My son & husband both now eat it like there is no tomorrow so I have to bake a loaf a week.
If I have it in stock, I love to use our local Fosterton Farm Biodynamic Organic Unbleached Flour. If not, I often loosely measure half whole wheat flour & plain white flour. I find it gives a lovely country texture to the banana bread without making it too crumbly. Enjoy!

200 grams unsalted butter, softened
1 cup of white sugar
¼ cup of brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
3 large eggs
4 large ripened bananas
   - keep 1 banana aside (cut in half lengthways)
350 grams plain flour
1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp or 3 shakes ground allspice
¾ cup buttermilk
pinch of sea salt, optional

:: Preheat oven to 180°C. Pre-prepare a 23.5x15x9cm deep loaf tin (I use one with sharp edges) with baking paper. I simply place one long piece across the pan & when it is done, lift it straight out onto the cooling rack.
Place the butter, both sugars & vanilla paste into a bowl, then beat with an electric mixer/beaters on a high speed until light & creamy. Add eggs, one by one, mixing between each one. Add flour & bicarb soda, buttermilk, salt & mix on low speed until ingredients are just combined. Add the 3 bananas, & again, mix on low speed until the banana is just dispersed through. Pour into the prepared loaf tin. Carefully slice the final banana that you have kept aside in half (lengthways) & place carefully on top of the batter in the tin. Bake for 70-75mins, or until cake tested clean with a skewer & golden on top.

a beautiful banana mixture

Kitchen Notes:  
:: To substitute buttermilk, add 1 tbs of lemon juice to the desired qualities of half cream/half milk. Stir & set aside on your benchtop for a few minutes to let it sour.
:: When making the banana bread for children, I leave out the salt to keep the sodium levels down.
:: I also find that the condition of the bananas play a great part in the consistency of the batter. If the bananas aren’t ripe enough, they tend to be floury so add more milk accordingly to achieve the perfect cake batter texture. If they are older, they tend to be more "caramelised" & sweeter, so you may be able to adjust the sugar levels as well.

kids love this one too!

Toast & Serve: The absolute BEST way to toast your banana bread is with a gorgeously thick slice on the stovetop in a non-stick pan. Simply lightly butter each side & toast over a medium heat until golden. It is great with mascarpone & honey or a slathering of butter.

Source: Fosterton Farm Biodynamic Organic Unbleached Flour
Bakers Secret Deep Loaf Pan 23x5x15x9cm, online & from David Jones

If you are famous for a recipe and would like to share, contact me at on my email. 

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