Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Date & Banana Loaf

I started off this recipe with the idea that it was for my mother who, you may recall, is on a low-sugar diet. When I make it for her, I put in the quarter cup of chopped dates. Since it is pretty low in fat, I've been making it for myself lately, and I've noticed the quantity of dates I put in creeping up. I like it better with twice as many dates, I have to admit. I just don't think it qualifies as low sugar any more. Oh well. 

You could bake this as muffins, which is something I keep intending to do, but forgetting. I'm not sure exactly how long it would take to bake that way; but I would think 15 to 20 minutes if you make 12 muffins.

If you use frozen bananas - I usually do, since whenever any bananas get ahead of us, I just toss them in the freezer - be sure to take them out to thaw at least 20 minutes before you get started. Peel and mash them, then let the mash sit and thaw for another 10 minutes before you mix it into the batter. If you leave them until the last moment, the still-frozen bananas will freeze the honey, which is very annoying (ask me how I know...) and may affect how long the cake takes to bake. Also, I'm saying 1 cup mashed banana, but for pete's sake, put in two medium, whatever that works out to be. It should be close enough to go on with.

Date & Banana Loaf

8 servings
1 hour 15 minutes - 15 minutes prep time

1 1/2 cups soft whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (1/8 of a small nutmeg)
1/3 cup mild vegetable oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 large egg
1 cup peeled, mashed very ripe banana (2 medium)
1/4 to 1/2 cup finely diced dates

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly oil a small loaf pan.

Measure the flour, salt, and baking powder. Grate the nutmeg into the flour. Set these dry ingredients aside.

Put the oil and honey in a mixing bowl, and stir until fairly well blended. Break in the egg, and continue stirring until everything is well amalgmated (emulsified).

Mix in the bananas, then the flour, adding the dates once the flour is about half mixed in. Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan, and smooth it out evenly. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until done. Let cool for about 10 minutes then remove it from the pan to finish cooling on a rack.

Last year at this time I made Wild Rice & Root Vegetable Salad.

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