Every baker, mom, kitchen lover, foodie, bakoholic has a recipe or 2 stuck to her fridge door or side with a favourite magnet. It’s an oil- stained piece of handwritten or photo copied paper that is covered in flour, an eggy finger print in a corner, scribbled notes only she can read and the gentle aroma of vanilla stuck to it……I am one of those fridge magnet freaks. Having collected magnets from wherever I have been, I have put them to the best use, anchoring my recipes, much to the annoyance of the 2 men in the house who find the fluttering pages a nuisance especially when they can’t find the fridge handle! Among these dog-eared pages of recipes you will find one of my favourites- Banana and Nut Buns copied by hand from a magazine a few years back in a doctor’s waiting room.
Bananas – love them, hate them but you can’t ignore them. Its probably the first solid your mum fed you. A fruit with potassium, sugars, vitamins and power packed carbs. Every athlete and swimmers pre workout snack. You would think after singing an ode to bananas I have a consumption running into a few dozens a week….sadly No. A certain Mr.13 is not a big fan of the Big B and would rather go to a workout on an empty tummy than have a banana early morning. Well that’s where my Banana and nut buns save the day. But the recipe stuck to the fridge has way too much flour and sugar to qualify as a healthy “grab n go” snack ……so I decided to turn it on its head and make it a perfect power packed piece of cake every little boy would happily gobble and every mom would gladly offer him and herself (more than a Slice).
Oats (my fav health food), wheat flour, raisins, prunes, walnuts and dates and no, no, no, sugar whatsoever……now that will generate a lot of “Likes”, I am sure. It comes out of the oven a deep brown, cracked top and smelling like a sweet, baked heaven. How can I forget the hero of the cake….Banana. That itself adds so much natural sweetness to the cake that the sugar is not required. Dates in place of sugar add the right amount of sweetness without over-powering the banana flavour. If you like your cakes on the sweeter side then a tablespoon or two of caster sugar with the dates maybe just what you need. But I suggest doing it my way, without the sugar. The prunes add sharpness and a surprise tang. If prunes are not your thing then feel free to add golden raisins. This recipe can be turned into a loaf (8” by 2”) or 9-10 muffins. The loaf takes a good 45-50 minutes in the oven but the muffins are super quick ((only 18-20 minutes). I challenge any banana non-lover to ignore this cake. It is intense, it is “fall apart” soft and addictive. The ingredients are on most little ones “yuck” list and every moms “wish” list. Go ahead turn the tables on them…..Go Bananas!!
Banana And Nut Buns
Makes- 1 loaf (8” by 2”) or 9-10 muffins
50 grms Oats (ground to a fine powder)
50 grms Wheat flour
30 grms plain flour
1 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
55 grms Butter or Margerine at room temperature
170 grms deseeded dates (soft, black dates)
3 medium Bananas mashed
1 tsp Vanilla essence
30 grms walnuts
30 grms prunes
½ tsp Cinnamon
85 ml milk
- Pre heat the oven to 190 C. Oil and line your muffin tin with paper liners/ oil and flour the loaf tin and line the bottom with parchment paper.
- Sift the flours and baking powder and set aside.
- Finely chop or mash the dates. Beat the butter and dates together till well mixed. Add the egg and beat until light. Add in the vanilla and the cinnamon. Add the bananas and beat them in.
- Stir in the walnuts and prunes. Fold in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, in 3 parts, starting and ending with the flour.
- Spoon the mixture into prepared tins and bake buns 18-20 minutes until golden brown and skewer inserted into one of the buns comes out clean. The loaf will take about 45 minutes.
- Cool for 10 minutes in the tray and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.