Banana bread

You can use only dates, only figs or maybe experiment with apricots or other moist dried fruits. Your bananas should be really ripe, with spotty skins and maybe a few black bits.


  • 125g butter
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed (4 if small)
  • 190g self raising flour
  • 60ml milk
  • 150g dates, chopped into chunks
  • 150g semi-dried figs, chopped into chunks
  • walnut pieces for decoration
  • a little demerara sugar to sprinkle over


  • Pre-heat the oven to 150 C (fan).
  • Grease and line a 2lb loaf tin.
  • Melt the butter, sugar and vanilla in a saucepan over a medium heat.
  • Remove from the heat. Add the bananas and mix well.
  • Add the egg, mix well.
  • Stir in the flour and milk.
  • Mix in the dates and figs.
  • Pour the mixture into the loaf tin.
  • Decorate with walnut pieces and sprinkle over a couple of spoons of demerara sugar to give a golden crunchy topping.
  • Into the oven and bake for 35 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean and there is a golden brown crust. Cooking time can vary according to the quantity and moisture content of the banana and fruit, sometimes up to 45 or 50 minutes.

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