Desperate times, call for desperate measures…

With restrictions being put upon the world at such a difficult time, supermarkets are struggling to keep up with demand. It’s really sad when you see people filling up on so many goods, that others are left without anything. However it’s great to see grocery stores now limiting the number of items that people can purchase, opening stores early to allow vulnerable and elderly shoppers to shop at ease and various other initiatives like helping communities and donating food/money.

I am not too fussy about not having certain foods, because although I’m vegetarian meaning I’m limiting myself somewhat with options, I like trying new things and quite often you can find substitutes relatively easily. Whether that’s swapping tofu for chickpeas, adding spinach or mushrooms to a dish to pad it out, or grilling an aubergine or courgette to serve on top of a stir fry instead of my usual quorn pieces – I’m flexible and quite enjoy using up random things in the fridge (I HATE waste…!)

One thing I’ve really struggled to find though, is a substitute for eggs!

I’m not particularly bothered about missing scrambled eggs or omelette on a weekend, but what did make me panic when I couldn’t get hold of any, was when I’d decided I wanted to bake. We are at G’s home in Suffolk and for his mumma’s birthday I’d planned to make a birthday cake of some description.

I have 2 giant boxes dedicated to baking ingredients at home which means I usually never need to plan ahead – I always have the right stuff in! But with no eggs in the house, I was going to have to improvise. I looked around and could only spot 6 bananas in my fruit bowl – was eggless banana bread a thing?

After researching a little bit online, I realised it was…

I adapted a couple of recipes I saw online to make this scrumptious loaf and with me being a sucker for banana bread I was confident that whatever the result it would be delicious. I must admit I was pretty pleased with how it turned out…

I added a little glaze on top for extra sweetness, and a sprinkle of pumpkin seeds/walnuts. I was surprised at how perfect the balance of sweetness was, how perfectly it was cooked in the middle and how perfect the texture was (it wasn’t too dense like some loafs can be) – it was just right! G said it was the best cake I’ve ever made… You can judge for yourself!

Ingredients:

For the banana bread:

3 ripe bananas
115g butter, melted
140ml buttermilk (Mix 140ml cup of semi skimmed milk with juice of ½ lemon and allow to curdle for 15 mins)
2 tsps. vanilla extract
100g dark brown sugar
100g soft light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. bicarb of soda
190g plain flour
50g walnuts, chopped and toasted
50g pumpkin seeds

For the glaze:

1 cup of icing sugar
3 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. walnuts, chopped and toasted
1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds

Method:

– Preheat the oven to 180°C fan and prepare a loaf tin with a little butter and a liner.

– In a medium bowl, mash the bananas with a fork until smooth. Stir in the melted butter and mix to combine.

– Stir in the buttermilk, vanilla and sugar before adding the baking powder and bicarb of soda – mix until combined.

– Add the flour, walnuts and pumpkin seeds and mix until just combined.

– Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a wooden skewer comes out clean.

– Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the tin, before removing and allowing it to cool fully on a wire rack.

– To make the glaze mix all ingredients in a small bowl until smooth.

– Drizzle the bread with the glaze and sprinkle with walnuts and pumpkin seeds and allow to set.

Enjoy!

IH xo