Age old problem: you’ve got a few bananas that have gone past being nice and yellow, with some slightly unsightly (and to some inedible) black bits. Don’t sling them away, or douse them in custard (although feel free to be tempted by that). Try this quick banana bread recipe, based on the one in the River Cottage Family Cookbook. It’s one of the best I’ve found. If you have a personal preference let me know by commenting on this article!
100g butter (but I use margarine)
125g caster sugar (although I get just as good results with plain old granulated sugar)
Three pretty ripe bananas
200g self raising flour
A good handful of chopped dried apricots
The juice of one lemon
(The cookbook also suggests using raisins, but I think the apricots are enough.)
1. With a fork mash the bananas in a bowl.
2. Preheat the oven to 160C/gas mark 3.
3. Line a loaf tin with greaseproof paper.
4. Chop up the apricots into any size you want: small, large, or randomly.
5. With a wooden spoon cream the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until they’re well blended.
6. Break an egg into the mixture adding about a quarter of the flour and fold it into together. Repeat with the other egg.
7. Add the dried fruit and bananas and stir.
8. Squeeze in the lemon juice.
10. Pour the mixture into the tin, smooth the top (not too perfectly, if you like) before placing the tin into the oven, for about an hour.
11. Check the cake by inserting a knife into the middle. If it comes out clean the cake is ready, otherwise return to the oven for another five to ten minutes before checking again.
12. Leave the cake in the tin on the hob for about 15 minutes, then turn it out onto a wire rack and peel off the paper.