Picture: Penny Williams
One of my favourite things is searching out new and interesting recipes to try. Of course, this means that every time I find one, I bookmark it under "recipes to try". I have these sub folders in my bookmark file: "recipes to try" and "recipe sites" and "food shopping". I find a lot of these ideas at tastespotting as well as the food blogs I read on a regular basis such as notquitenigella and FOODjimoto. It is a wicked spiral of course, because on these sites I find plenty of things to cook and there IS only so much time and so many meals in one's life. Of course, that tally doesn't even begin to include the recipes that are found in magazines or cookbooks! I also seem to collect too many of them. So over my summer holidays had a bit of a cull a few to declutter and make more room. Of course, that made more room for the cook books I received as Christmas gifts..so of course it is a vicious cycle! One thing is for sure, I need more room in my kitchen.
Anyway, one of these recipes I found recently on the Internet is this wonderful Cafe Style Banana Bread over at Clairekcreations (a fellow Qld'er to boot! I miss my home state sometimes) I just made some this afternoon and it is just delicious. I think you have to be really careful with the banana bread recipes; this one however is lovely and moist -just as it should be. In this lot, I left the walnuts out since I didn't have any and didn't feel like wandering down to the store. I have kept it in the recipe though. I love the pictures on the recipe -she has so much more patience than me to photograph the whole process!
Cafe Style Banana Bread (from http://clairekcreations.com/2011/04/cafe-style-banana-bread/)
1 cup mashed banana (this was about 2 and a bit small bananas)
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
40g butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/2 cup buttermilk (I didn't have any, so I followed Clairek's suggestion and used milk with a couple of teaspoons of lemon juice in it)
1/4 cup treacle or 1/4 cup honey (I actually used a teaspoon of molasses, then topped up to a quarter cup of honey here, for a stronger taste)
1 and 1/2 cups plain flour
1 cup SR flour
2 heaped tsp mixed spice
1 heaped tsp ground cinnamon
heaped quarter cup chopped walnuts (you could also use chopped pecan nuts if you wish)
Decoration (not required, but looks lovely!)
extra banana, thinly sliced lengthways
Sugar crystals, such as CSR Coffee Sugar Crystals
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius, or 160 degrees (fan forced).
1. Combine the wet ingredients (banana, sugar, eggs, butter, buttermilk, treacle) in a large bowl or mixer.
2. Stir in the rest of the ingredients and then transfer to a greased loaf pan
*if you would like a bit of decoration put thinly sliced banana diagonally on top, then shake some sugar crystals over that for a bit of crunchiness)
3. Bake for 1 hour. An inserted knife or skewer should come out clean at this stage. If you decide to make these as mini muffins instead, it will take about 20 minutes
4. Let it cool in pan for around 5 minutes then transfer to a rack.
5. Serve to your adoring masses, toasted (or not!) with butter slathered on liberally.