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June 24, 2019

The Ultimate Banana Bread

by Julieta Lucca

Let’s face it, everyone’s idea of what the best banana bread tastes like is different.

However, no matter how much of a purist you are or how ripe you like the bananas to be,  there’s not a chance you’d refuse a slice of this freshly baked banana bread.

Today we show you a very simple but super tasty banana bread topped with a crumble that adds an extra layer of buttery flavors to the loaf. You can always further experiment with the flavours by using slightly underripe of overripe bananas, maybe even some beurre noisette instead of regular butter.

ingredients

🕑 1 hour 20 minutes

  • serves 8
  • 285 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 110 g unsalted butter (softened)
  • 225 g soft light brown sugar
  • 2 free range eggs
  • 4 ripe bananas (mashed)
  • 85 ml buttermilk (or regular milk with 1 1/2 tsp lemon juice)
  • 100 g chopped walnuts

for the crumble

  • (optional)
  • 75 g plain flour
  • 50 g unsalted butter
  • 45 g soft light brown sugar

– Begin by measuring all your ingredients and making sure they are all ready to be used, then heat the oven to 160°C.

For the crumble: cut the butter into cubes and place them in a bowl together with the flour and sugar. Rub them all together with your fingertips until the texture resembles breadcrumbs. This should take about 2-3 minutes. The idea is to use our fingertips because they are the least warm part of our hands, so it prevents the butter from melting. We want the butter to keep its consistency and create little beads of dough when it combines with the flour and sugar.

For the banana bread: Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt together into a large bowl. Cream the sugar and softened butter together in a separate bowl until the mixture is light and fluffy. You can do this by hand but it takes quite a lot of work, so try using an electric mixer or standing mixer with the paddle attachment. You want to beat the sugar and butter together at high speed for about 5-8 minutes.

– Beat in the eggs, one at a time allowing them to incorporate before adding the next one. Then add the mashed bananas, buttermilk and vanilla extract and mix again. Fold in the flour mixture, making sure not to overbeat the mixture but equally not leaving any flour pockets unmixed. Add chopped walnuts and lightly combine all together.

– Grease your loaf tin or spring-form pan. You can also line it with baking paper so you can remove the loaf more easily at the end. Pour the cake mixture in and sprinkle the crumble uniformly on top.

– Bake the bread for 1 hour or until it has risen and become golden. You can insert a toothpick or butter knife at the center, if it comes out clean it means it’s cooked, but if it comes out with some raw cake batter, it’s better to leave it to cook a bit longer.

– Remove from the oven and let it cool completely before removing from the tin. Enjoy slightly warm or cold.

*You can always use this recipe to make banana bread muffins instead, just adjust the cooking time to 30 minutes.◼

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