Sunday, 13 March 2016


Ah! What better way to spend a chilly afternoon then making a delicious banana loaf. For me its one of those go to bakes for when you need something comforting and warm with a nice big mug of tea! We always have bananas in our freezer which we pop in there as they begin to turn and then when defrosted, they become soft and perfect for incorporating into a cake batter. Banana bread recipes are easy to adapt so over the next few posts I'm going to show you a couple of variations starting with this boozy fruit and nut banana bread.

 Amaretto in anything for me is like cat nip, hence it's inclusion in this recipe. For optimum booziness you should try and soak the sultanas in the amaretto overnight so they go proper plump and boozy. If you are making this loaf as a spare of the moment jobby then soaking the sultanas for about ten minutes will be just fine. Always tip in any of the amaretto that hasn't been soaked up as well. It would be a shame for it to go to waste!

For the nutty element I have gone with pecans as they are a softer nut that isn't going to surprise anyone's teeth when you chomp through the bread. You can use another nut if you wish. Walnuts would work well I think and maybe even pistachios. The honey poured over the top if just for a little finishing touch and to add a sweet kick to the banana loaf. Totally optional of course!

The recipe below will make two 1lb loafs. Well, why have one banana loaf when you can have two!

Boozy Banana Bread

50g Sultanas
2 Tbsp Amaretto
200g Mashed Banana
2 Tbsp Semi Skimmed Milk
100g Softened Butter
150g Plain Flour
150g Golden Caster Sugar
1 Tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
1 Tsp Baking Powder
2 Whole Eggs
50g Chopped Pecans
2 Tbsp Runny Honey

  1.  Begin by mixing together the sultanas and Amaretto in a small bowl. Leave the sultanas to soak overnight if possible or for a minimum of 10 minutes
  2. When your sultanas are ready to go, get your oven toasty warm to 180 degrees (160 fan) and grease and line 2 1lb loaf tins.
  3. Chuck the banana, milk, butter, flour, sugar, bicarb, baking powder and eggs into a large bowl and give everything a good beat until smooth and well combined. Add in the amaretto soaked sultanas (with any excess liquid) and chopped pecans and fold through until just evenly distributed.
  4. Divide the mixture between the two prepared loaf tins and place in the centre of your oven to bake for 40-45 minutes until golden brown and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Drizzle over the runny honey.
Remove the loaves from the oven and leave in the tin to cool slightly until transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, slice yourself a slice and serve with a big pot of tea. Magic! With the second loaf, you can wrap it up in baking paper and pop it in the freezer. Then you can take it out one morning and have it defrosted ready for a spot of afternoon tea if you have friends or family coming over. The soft loaf gives way to the crunchy pecans and the boozy burst of the amaretto soaked sultanas and you can have all that in under one hour of prep and baking time. Doesn't get much better than that really does it!

This is just the first of my banana bread bonanza recipes. Here are three more varieties to try, just click on the links to check them out;

Totally Tropical Banana Bread
Superfood Seed Banana Bread
Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

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