Banana loaf to me is one of those recipes that is quintessential in a baker’s kitchen. Why? Because it is an easy quick and deliciously sweet way to use up over ripe bananas. What I equally love is that my greengrocer always marks down their overripe bananas to $1 – $1.20 a kilo. When this happens I stock up the freezer with these cheap bananas and take them out when I feel the need to bake some banana loaf. Here I decided to share the recipe I have recently been using as it freezes really well and is perfect to drop into my kids’ lunchboxes. I typically make a loaf in the school holidays, slice it up, wrap each piece in foil and pop them all into a freezer proof container. Then I simply take a piece out of the freezer (foil and all) and place into a lunchbox. By the time morning tea or lunchtime rolls around for them at school, it has defrosted. By putting it in frozen it also acts as an edible lunchbox cooler!
For a process video on how I make this banana loaf click the link below:
Hints, Tips and Tricks
What to do with ripe or over ripe bananas.
Put them in the freezer. As I mentioned above, I like to buy discounted over ripe or super ripe bananas from the supermarket or greengrocer and put them in the freezer. When I have time to do some baking (or just feel the need to bake) I can grab some out of the freezer and make a quick banana cake or use them in a recipe like this one and banana loaf.
Self raising versus flour and baking powder
Either can be used in this recipe. for me, when I make a banana loaf, it is usually because I am in a hurry and want to make something quickly. Usually I am trying to get through my day and it is baking day for the kids’ freezer lunchbox fillers. That’s right, I set aside a day where the aim is to do a bunch of baking especially for lunchbox fillers that can be placed in the freezer and then quickly whipped out the night before for the kids’ lunchboxes. Back to the actual topic on flour… I use self-raising flour, but standard mix of 1 cup to 2 tsp baking powder ration will work just as good in place of the self-raising flour in this recipe.
Why do you use non-stick paper?
Basically, I am lazy and like to make cleaning up as easy as possible. Thus, I like to line my baking tins with non-stick baking paper so clean up is a case of pickup of the paper, toss it in the bin and give the tin a quick rinse. In fact I use non-stick paper a lot when I bake and cook; I use it to line oven trays when cooking dinner in the oven too! Of course if you prefer to ditch the baking paper, a good greasing of the tin with butter will work too.
Keeping the foil
When I place pieces into the freezer, I wrap each individual piece in foil to prevent them sticking together. As I like to make a banana loaf for each school term I tell my little dude to keep the foil in his lunchbox and bring it home. I then proceed to wash the foil and place in a little zip lock bag for storage and in preparation to be used again next time. If you want to do this too but you are not confident your little charge(s) will keep the foil, try unwrapping the slice of banana loaf just after you remove from freezer and then place in lunchbox.
How long can this stay in the freezer?
About 3 months. Although, left to their own devices I doubt my little ones would let it last that long. Our school terms are about 10 weeks long so I make 10 slices for the freezer. That means mine stays in the freezer for about 2.5 months so yeah, no longer than 3 months to be safe.
5 ripe bananas
1/2 cup self-raising flour
1 cup standard white flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
100g butter, melted
1 tsp cinnamon
Mash bananas with a fork or masher until well mashed.
Combine the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
Beat the eggs in a separate bowl.
Mix eggs into dry ingredients.
Mix in melted butter.
Mix in mashed banana.
Pour batter into a loaf tin lined with non-stick baking paper
Bake at 180 degrees celcius for 40 mins until golden and a skewer comes out clean
Slice and enjoy!