Banana bread is one of the first things I ever baked in our Home Ec class in school, and I still make it regularly. It’s super easy to make, and a tasty, healthier treat to keep energy levels up during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Toddlers will love it too as a snack! It’s nice and moist so no need to add butter or spread. You don’t need any fancy equipment to make this. All you need are the following kitchen items:
Mixing bowl (even a large saucepan will do)
Wooden spoon or silicone spatula
Loaf tin (or you can use a deep round cake tin if you have one)
Sieve (if you don’t have one, don’t worry, you can do without)
100g wholemeal flour
125g plain flour
1 tsp salt
1 heaped tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
80g caster sugar
1 egg beaten
75ml sunflower or rapeseed oil
3 medium-sized ripe bananas, mashed
a few drops of vanilla extract (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180oC. Pour a little sunflower or rapeseed oil onto a piece of paper towel and use this to grease the tin by wiping it all around the sides and bottom of the tin. You can also line the bottom of the tin with greaseproof paper if you wish.
Weigh out the flours and sieve them into a bowl. The bran from the wholemeal flour won’t go through the sieve so just add it into the bowl once the flour has gone in. (If you don’t have a sieve, add the flours into the bowl and mix to remove any lumps.)
Add in the salt, baking powder and cinnamon, and stir in the sugar.
Measure the oil into a measuring jug and add in the egg. Use a fork to beat the egg lightly in the oil.
Add in the vanilla essence to the eggs and oil (if using).
Mash the bananas on a plate or chopping board using a fork.
Mix the oil and egg mixture into the flour mixture. Don’t beat – just mix lightly with the wooden spoon or spatula to combine the ingredients.
Add in mashed bananas and mix in lightly until incorporated.
Spoon into the tin and bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes, until the loaf is golden brown and springs back when prodded gently with your finger.
Leave in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn onto a wire rack to cool.
Nutrition information (per slice): 176 calories, 3g protein, 7.2g fat, 12.6g sugar, 1.8g fibre, 0.5g salt Source of fibre The banana bread is suitable for freezing. It will also keep well in an airtight tin for 2-3 days (if it lasts that long!). Once you’ve mastered the basic recipe you can vary it slightly by adding different ingredients such as 50g chopped milk or dark chocolate, or 50g chopped nuts such as walnuts or pecans. Remember that nuts aren’t suitable for children up to age 5 so don’t use them if you are giving the banana bread to kids under 5 years.