May 27, 2013

Chocolate and Pecan Banana Bread

You know when you want something but you can't have it? I mean this in all aspects of life. 

You can't apply for the job you'd be incredible at because you only have 1 year's experience instead of 3. You go out for lunch and really want to order a sandwich but the café doesn't have gluten free bread and you're coeliac. The cute guy you like already has a girlfriend. He's not good for you anyway, especially when he gives you the impression he's single when he's not. You'd like to rock a fringe but you've got a cows lick. You'd love to eat a honking piece of cake but you're on a diet. You wish you could chill with your friends but you've got work/an exam/an assignment tomorrow. You want to buy those super cute sandals but you've no money. You want to make banana bread but there are no bananas in the house. 

Real life situations. 

Any idea what aspect I'm going to hone in on? Yep, that's right, bananas. Looks like I'm really going to be writing a post about bananas, huh. 

Bananas are coveted in my house. They do not last. At least to 20 are bought every week and they'll be gone before the weekend. Notice my dilemma? A lack of bananas=a lack of banana bread in my life. To get this banana bread made I had to take four bananas, place them in a bowl and label them with a DO NOT EAT sticker.

Again, real life situations.

Whoever thought of putting bananas into bread is a genius. I love them. A sweet, unbelievably moist, intense banana flavoured bread looks amazing, smells amazing and tastes 

The bread is super soft so I think that nuts are essential for texture. Pecans or walnuts work best, they're strong in flavour and can stand up to the banana. I added chunks of chocolate too. Chocolate, banana, pecans...flavour combination of the Gods.

I wholeheartedly encourage you to double this recipe, I'm so mad at myself that I didn't. I could have had banana bread for a week...instead of just a few days!


Holly, x

This is a fairly foolproof recipe...sieve, melt, mix, stir, chop, stir again, bake. 

Sieve together the flour, baking power and salt into a bowl. Stir through the caster sugar. 

Whisk together the melted butter, the egg and sour cream or yoghurt. This may look like it has's cool, it hasn't, fret not, you're all good. Carry on, sista. 

Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until 3/4 of the way mixed in. Make sure not to beat the mixture. One, you'll be wearing the flour and two, you don't want to overwork it. 

Add in the mashed banana, chopped pecans and small chunks of chocolate. 

I bought a bar of chocolate and cut it into chunks, you could totally buy a bag of chocolate chips...I just prefer chunking my own chocolate. Also, I left some of the banana fairly chunky as I mashed it to give a little texture. 

Carefully stir the mixture together until everything is well combined. Make sure to stir all the way to the bottom of the bowl to catch any lumps of flour. 

Spoon the mixture into a lined loaf tin and bake at 180C for 1 hour, until the bread is springy to the touch and beautifully coloured all over.

The smell in your house as this bakes will be bonkers. 

Recipe, makes 1 loaf. (adapted from the Avoca Café Cookbook)

225g Plain Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
100g Caster Sugar
50g Butter, melted
1 Egg
1 Tablespoon Sour Cream or Greek Yoghurt
75g Pecans, chopped
100g Dark Chocolate, cut into small chunks
4 Large Ripe Bananas, mashed

Preheat the oven to 180C.
Grease and flour a 9 inch loaf tin and cover the base and sides with parchment.
Sieve together the plain flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
Stir through the caster sugar.
Whisk together the sour cream/yoghurt, melted (cooled) butter and egg.
Stir, don't beat, the egg mixture into the flour mix until 3/4 of the way mixed in.
Add in the chopped pecans, mashed banana and chocolate chunks.
Stir the mixture until well combined, making sure there are no clumps of flour in the bottom of the bowl.
Spoon into the lined loaf tin and bake at 180C for 1 hour-it should spring back to the touch of your finger and be nicely coloured all over. 
Remove from the oven, allow to sit in the tin for 15 minutes, remove from tin and allow to cool before slicing. 

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