Everybody loves a warm slice of banana bread, especially if it’s bursting with fruity flavour and charmingly dotted with a decent smatter of crunchy walnuts. While I believe such an item makes essential dessert fare at any respectable café, nothing quite beats a rustic, homemade little loaf of the stuff. Sweet, nutty and just a little bit zesty from the orange, this fragrant quickbread is soft, springy, moist and quite easy to make.
Simple, mindful touches like the quick dash of orange zest and the banana slices left on top to caramelise sets this delightful creation apart from its mass-produced cousins sitting in pretty rows encased in walls of glass at popular cafés and bakeries. The extra effort is quite worth the final product, and you’ll be happy to know that your favourite cup of coffee goes very well with it too.
We currently have an abundance of fresh oranges at home, courtesy of family friends who own an orange orchard up in the hinterland. Apart from this lovely loaf, we’ve also made some orange chocolate brownies just to use up some of the citrusy fruit. Recipe to come soon!
Banana, Orange & Walnut Bread
2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup dark brown sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup mashed banana
1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/4 cup milk
1 banana, cut lengthwise
- Line a regular loaf tin with baking paper and preheat oven to 165°C.
- In a small bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Mix well, set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar together until fluffy.
- Continue to mix while gradually adding the beaten eggs to the butter mixture.
- Add the mashed banana, walnuts and orange zest, stirring well after each addition.
- Alternating between the milk and the flour, gently fold each ingredient into the butter mixture in 3 or 4 increments until just combined.
- Pour batter into prepared loaf tin and arrange the banana slices on top.
- Bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and let stand in tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.