Whenever we have too-ripe bananas in the house, I immediately set to and start making some banana bread. It's the absolute simplest thing to bake, and is practically fool-proof - plus, I always have all the ingredients in the house so it just makes more sense than throwing these poor bananas in the bin. You can knock it together in 15 minutes, and the next day bring a bunch into work and share the joy. All in all, a wonderful time will be had.
I actually adapted this recipe from the Guardian one, which is a good starting place if you want to start messing around and adding your own flavours into this bread. A bit of cinnamon or some chunks of fudge might be fun, but for me - nutmeg, vanilla and rum is the bees knees.
Although this recipe is called 'boozy banana bread', it doesn't really taste all that boozy. The rum just gives a nice depth of flavour and keeps the bread moist - but you can add more if you want it to taste more rummy, or leave it out if you prefer.
- 3 or 4 medium sized ripe bananas
- A big glug of dark rum (any kind will do, I just used Co-Op's own since I don't have a favourite)
- 180g plain flour
- 2 and a half teaspoons of baking powder
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 160g light brown sugar
- 50g unsalted butter, melted
- 2 eggs, beaten
- a teaspoon to a tablespoon of vanilla extract (I'm generous with the vanilla, but you don't have to be! A bit of vanilla bean paste might also work a treat)
- freshly grated nutmeg to taste
1. First things first, mash the bananas using your standard potato masher. If you like a few lumps in your banana bread, which I do, leave it lumpy - otherwise mash until smooth. Add the rum and leave to stand.
2. Mix together the flour, salt and baking powder and leave to one side.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the sugar, melted butter and beaten eggs. Whisk until the mixture has slightly increased in volume and is paler than before.
4. Fold in the dry ingredients and the bananas until combined and a bit dough-y. Add your vanilla extract and freshly grated nutmeg. I am a little bit obsessed with the smell of nutmeg, it's so homely and warm, so I use absolutely tonnes but it's really up to you how nutmeg-y you want it.
It should rise quite a bit, so don't be alarmed if it appears to be ballooning in the oven. The top should be nice and brown when you take it out, and a knife stuck into the centre of the loaf should come out clean (or thereabouts - the banana will still be quite moist). Leave to cool in the tin for 20 minutes or so, and then lift out and onto a wire rack to cool properly. Once it's cool enough to touch, you're fine to serve it - it's actually better warm and fresh from the oven, but it'll keep for five days in a sealed tin.