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Banana Bread

by . Featured in HOW TO BE A DOMESTIC GODDESS
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Introduction

I haven't done a tremendous amount of fiddling with this, but I did once make it, for friends who are more chocolate-crazed than I am, by replacing 25g / 3 tablespoons of the flour with good cocoa powder (not drinking chocolate) and adding 100g / 4oz of dark chocolate, cut up into smallish chunks. And you could just as easily use the chocolate chips sold in the baking aisle of supermarkets.

If you're thinking about giving this cake to children, don't worry, the alcohol doesn't pervade: you just end up with stickily, aromatically swollen fruit.

I haven't done a tremendous amount of fiddling with this, but I did once make it, for friends who are more chocolate-crazed than I am, by replacing 25g / 3 tablespoons of the flour with good cocoa powder (not drinking chocolate) and adding 100g / 4oz of dark chocolate, cut up into smallish chunks. And you could just as easily use the chocolate chips sold in the baking aisle of supermarkets.

If you're thinking about giving this cake to children, don't worry, the alcohol doesn't pervade: you just end up with stickily, aromatically swollen fruit.

Banana Bread
Photo by Petrina Tinslay

Ingredients

Makes: 8-10 slices

Metric Cups
  • 100 grams sultanas
  • 75 millilitres dark rum (or Bourbon)
  • 175 grams plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 125 grams unsalted butter (melted)
  • 150 grams caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 small very ripe bananas mashed (approx. 400g total weight with skins on)
  • 60 grams chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup golden raisins
  • 5 tablespoons dark rum (or Bourbon)
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter (melted)
  • ¾ cup superfine sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 small very ripe bananas mashed (approx. 400g total weight with skins on)
  • ⅓ cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

  1. Put the sultanas and rum or bourbon in a smallish saucepan and bring to the boil.
  2. Remove from the heat, cover and leave for an hour if you can, or until the sultanas have absorbed most of the liquid, then drain.
  3. Preheat the oven to 170ºC/150°C Fan/gas mark 3/325ºF and get started on the rest. Put the flour, baking powder, bicarb and salt in a medium-sized bowl and, using your hands or a wooden spoon, combine well.
  4. In a large bowl, mix the melted butter and sugar and beat until blended. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then the mashed bananas. Then, with your wooden spoon, stir in the walnuts, drained sultanas and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture, a third at a time, stirring well after each bit. Scrape into a loaf tin (23 x 13 x 7cm / 9 x 5 x 3 inches) and bake in the middle of the oven for 1-1¼ hours. When it's ready, an inserted toothpick or fine skewer should come out cleanish. Leave in the tin on a rack to cool, and eat thickly or thinly sliced, as you prefer.
  1. Put the golden raisins and rum or bourbon in a smallish saucepan and bring to the boil.
  2. Remove from the heat, cover and leave for an hour if you can, or until the golden raisins have absorbed most of the liquid, then drain.
  3. Preheat the oven to 170ºC/150°C Fan/gas mark 3/325ºF and get started on the rest. Put the flour, baking powder, bicarb and salt in a medium-sized bowl and, using your hands or a wooden spoon, combine well.
  4. In a large bowl, mix the melted butter and sugar and beat until blended. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then the mashed bananas. Then, with your wooden spoon, stir in the walnuts, drained golden raisins and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture, a third at a time, stirring well after each bit. Scrape into a loaf tin (23 x 13 x 7cm / 9 x 5 x 3 inches) and bake in the middle of the oven for 1-1¼ hours. When it's ready, an inserted toothpick or fine skewer should come out cleanish. Leave in the tin on a rack to cool, and eat thickly or thinly sliced, as you prefer.

Tell us what you think

What 58 Others have said

  • Absolutely glorious recipe. I omitted the walnuts (nut allergy) and replaced 1/3 sugar with brown sugar which made it a little darker. Leave the raisins to soak for as long as possible so you get as much rum in there as you can. I know already I'll make this again and again and again.

    Posted by elliep311 on 28th September 2018
  • I make banana cake a lot, and this is one of the very best recipes I've ever done. The soaked fruit (I left mine for 24 hours) took it to another level of moistness, together with the crunch of the walnuts and banana flavour it made an absolutely delicious combination.

    Posted by MrsBobie on 14th August 2018
  • This is amazing, although I soaked the fruit in tea instead of rum, and used SR flour

    Posted by Snobs on 10th August 2018
  • I left out the walnuts, but stirred a couple of large dollops of crunchy peanut butter in right at the end. OH MY GOODNESS..... total heaven. Can’t stop eating it.

    Posted by ChocolateGinBeast on 9th August 2018
  • I love the chocolate version of this banana bread as mentioned in Nigella’s introduction part where you replace 25gr of flour with 25gr cocoa powder and also added 100gr dark choc chips, de-li-cious! ! Thank you Nigella for a delicious banana bread!! I also made it with gram flour instead of regular white flour plus the cocoa & choc chips in muffin cases rather than a loaf tin (reduce cooking time to 30 mins. It works! Super delicious and gluten free too!

    Posted by CarolinaMcB on 21st April 2018
  • Simply the best banana bread recipe....I substituted coconut sugar and Thompson raisins, that’s what I had on hand. Love the rum and raisin addition, truly elevates this breakfast bread. Thanks Nigella.

    Posted by Mollyann on 16th March 2018
  • I love banana bread - yummy.

    Posted by plrtsw on 5th February 2018
  • I have been making this cake for years, ever since I first bought 'Domestic Goddess' - it's evidenced by how spattered and sticky that page of the book has become. However, I recently made the chocolate version (footnote on the page, substitute some of the flour for cocoa and add chopped choc/choc chips); what a revelation! It is blooming gorgeous!!

    Posted by Jacshall62 on 22nd September 2017
  • Excelent!!! Awesome cake, My mother will make this cake on my daughter's birthday, which is helding on next month. Because she loves her very much.

    Posted by CakenGiftsin on 29th May 2017
  • Really yummy - my boyfriend and family loved it! I used wholewheat flour and 100g of dark brown sugar instead though and it was still very moist.

    Posted by sswwong on 1st March 2017
  • I made few changes to the recipe: I used 75grams more of flour, added mixed nuts, only 70grams of brown sugar, whiskey, 40grams of sultanas and add a bit of milk. It turned out to be moist but not too oily or fluffy. The liquor and nuts gave it a great flavour. Great recipe, one to keep in the book.

    Posted by Jimeto on 2nd January 2017
  • Having made this for the first time the other day, I'm lamenting over all the overripe bananas I've binned over the years! I didn't have any rum, raisins or walnuts to hand but am actually glad as this was first time making & eating banana bread so it was just great to make it all in the kitchen aid & nice to taste the banana within the moist (but not damp) airy,sticky (gets stickier on the top after afew days-almost treacle like) sponge. Amazing flavour..loved having it for breakfast with a latte. Looking forward to trying the chocolate version & Nigella's latest version with cardamom & cocoa nibs. Delicious.

    Posted by Babels on 24th November 2016
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