Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Nigel Slater's Banana, Hazelnut & Choclolate Loaf Cake

This is just the BEST cake!!!  I had a couple of extremely ripe banana's and as I am loath to throw them away, I freeze them, skins & all.  When defrosted they are mushy but when shoved in a cake, it doesn't really matter.  Anyway, usually I make the Hummingbird Bakery Banana Loaf cake which is just lovely (perfect with a cup of tea) but I have recently started following Nigel Slater on Twitter and someone asked him what to do with a glut of ripe bananas that they had and he suggested his recipe for this cake so I decided to give it a go

Glad I did, it is just lovely!  Very crumbly in texture and the hazelnuts give a nice background to the flavour but I suppose you could substitute with any other ground nut, almonds say.  I ground my own hazelnuts, just putting them in the oven on a tray for 5 mins to warm up and then rubbed the skin off with kitchen roll.  I put them in my little fab kenwood chopper (love it, its a great handy little chopper - birthday present from my mum!) and it made short work of blitzing them up.  Or I guess you could even leave them out if you wished. I also used all soft brown sugar as that's all I had in the cupboard whereas the recipe states half light muscavado & half golden caster sugar.  

I wanted to make the cake in a loaf tins and I need 2 of them and as I find recipes for 'loaf type cakes' can generally be split between 2 tins to make smaller loafs, but I wanted these to be full size so to speak so I took the recipe quantities and divided in half and then added that half back to the original amount (does that make sense??!!)

If you are baking this weekend or fancy trying something that is simple to make but lovely to eat, then I urge you to bake this cake!!


To follower Nigel on Twitter his address is @realnigelslater


Preparation method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3. Line the base and sides of a 20cm x 12cm/8in x 5in loaf tin with baking parchment.
  2. Beat the butter and sugars until light and coffee-coloured. This is best achieved in a food mixer.
  3. Toast the hazelnuts, rub them in a tea towel to remove their skins, then grind quite finely.

  4. Slowly add the eggs to the butter and sugar mixture, then mix in the toasted ground hazelnuts and self-raising flour.
  5. Peel the bananas and chop them the small pieces. Gently fold the vanilla extract, the bananas and the chocolate chips into the cake mixture, turning gently and taking care not to overmix.
  6. Scoop the cake batter into the prepared loaf tin. Dust with a little demerara sugar. Bake for between 1 hour and 1 hour 10 minutes, covering the cake with foil if the top starts to darken too quickly.

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