Hemsley and Hemsley - Banana bread
I’m a huge fan of the Hemsley and Hemsley recipe books. All their recipes are healthy nutritious and tasty. Their banana bread made from ground almonds has to be one of my favourites. For myself it’s the perfect breakfast and usually keeps me full until lunch.
Being healthy needs to be easy and convenient, and this is both. You can throw all the ingredients in one bowl and mix it all together, no faff! It will also keep fresh all week if you keep it in an airtight container in the fridge.
”This delicious banana bread needn’t be just an occasional treat. Nutritious and satisfying, it’s great for breakfast and as an on-the-road snack that will keep your energy levels steady. Rather than a filler of glutenous flour, we use ground almonds and flaxseed. Use a coffee grinder or powerful blender to grind your own flaxseed, if you can, otherwise buy ground flax which is available in most health food stores. We like the flavour of real, grass-fed butter in our bread but you could use coconut oil instead – anything but processed vegetable oils please.You know your bananas are ripe when the skins turn a deep shade of yellow and are covered in brown speckles. You can also try making the bread without any maple syrup, just adding a dash more vanilla and a few drops of stevia to the mix. Add a small handful of goji berries, roughly chopped walnuts or cacao nibs for variaton. “
300g (11oz) ripe bananas (roughly 3 bananas)
30g (1¼ oz) butter, at room temperature
2 tbsp maple syrup (adjust to suit your taste buds)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 tbsp lemon juice
220g (7 ¾ oz) ground almonds
30g (1 ¼ oz) ground flaxseed (also known as linseed)
1 tablespoon whole
flax, for sprinkling
.Preheat the oven to fan 170°C/Gas mark 5. Line a 900g (2lb) loaf tin measuring about 23cm x 13cm (9in x 5 ¼ in) with enough baking parchment to double as a wrap for storing the banana bread (if it lasts).
.Mash the bananas and butter in a mixing bowl to a pulp with a fork. Add the maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla, eggs, bicarbonate of soda, lemon juice and a small pinch of salt. Mix well with a whisk.
.Add the ground almonds and ground flaxseed and mix well. Or, even speedier, you can throw all the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blitz together.
. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, sprinkle with the whole flax and bake for 1–1¼ hours. It’s ready when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out dry. If your bread starts to look quite brown after the first 30 minutes, then cover the top with baking parchment until it has finished baking.
. Remove from the oven and leave to cool a little. Serve warm or at room temperature with some lightly salted butter and a cup of tea. Store the bread, covered, in the fridge (remember there is no sugar or preservatives) for up to a week or slice and freeze (that way you can enjoy a slice at a time reheated under the grill).