I threw out my last packet of white caster sugar about 3 years ago now. Have you done it yet? You’ll never look back. It seemed terribly scary at the time. I think what I mainly worried about back then was that so many recipes call for it – and then I stopped following recipes to the letter! We discovered so many amazing and delicious ways to sweeten desserts by substitution, that had far more interesting flavour profiles than what I call ‘refined lolly sugar’ could every offer. While it’s best to keep sweet things to a small thing a day and the odd celebration treats no doubt, what’s great about using unrefined sweetening options when you do bake, is that your body isn’t tricked in the same way that uber-refined white sugar and artificial sweeteners trick it. It can process real, unrefined ingredients in a calmer fashion! The calmest way to enjoy sweetness in terms of your system’s coping mechanisms, is to pair it with a protein / healthy fat combination – probably why we have combinations such as nut butter and jams, or fruit and cheese.
This loaf is a great example of using just fruit to sweeten your baking – and nothing else! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do at home. I took inspiration from a date and banana cake that Jude Blereau did in an earlier book of hers, and as with most things, made it my own!
Just in time for the weekend. If you’re completely grain free, there are some delicious coconut flour based banana bread recipes out there. My friend Lee, creator of supercharged food has fab little almond flour based banana muffins in her cook book for one…
Have an awesome weekend. What are you eating?
Real Food. Happy Bodies. Happy Planet
Simple Prune, Banana and Cranberry Loaf Recipe
- An oven, preheated to 180 celcius
- 2 cups spelt flour (gluten free flour is fine too, if you’re intolerant)
- 2.5 tsp aluminium free baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon*
- 1/2 tsp mixed sweet spices (ground nutmeg, allspice, star anise, cardamom… whatever you have.)
- 1/2 cup cranberries (preservative + vegetable oil FREE)
- 1/2 cup pitted prunes, chopped
- 3 super ripe large bananas, mashed
- 1 banana, cut into small 1/2 cm chunks
- 1/2 cup fine chopped pecans or walnuts
- 70 g butter
- 1/2 cup yoghurt
- 1/2 cup whole milk (raw, whole organic, nut milk… all fine)
- Place flours, spices and dried fruits into a bowl together and spread the fruit evenly through the flour. Add all the other ingredients. Place into a greased loaf pan (i use macadamia oil, because you can pour it in, spread it out in the pan, and then moisturise your hands with the rest!
- Bake for about an hour, but do a skewer test at 50 minutes. Leave to cool and turn out onto plate. Slice and butter for afternoon tea indulgence, or pack a slice for the lunch boxes.
- For Nut free: Replace the 1/2 cup walnuts with pumpkin seeds, shredded coconut or simply a little more fruit. If you do choose to sub with shredded coconut, just add another tablespoon of yoghurt, to maintain delicious moisture levels.