It’s unavoidable. If you’re not making it then you’re asking for a recipe for it. And if you’re not doing either of those things then you’re definitely complaining about everyone else making it.
Yes, it is of course the ubiquitous and oh so Instagram-friendly, Banana Bread! But why is everyone making Banana Bread and why now? Well, there’s the fact that it is ridiculously easy to make and in uncertain times, there is something intensely comforting about repetitive drudgery: weigh, mix, bake. Repeat as needed.
There’s also the dubious notion that it is somehow “healthier” than its other cake brethren just because it has a fruit and bread in the title. After all, what other cake can be routinely eaten for breakfast without even a trace of guilt. Or perhaps its the Proust’s Madeleine effect, where just one whiff of its intoxicating vanilla-banana perfume is enough to transport us back to the nursery, when times were simpler, all our decisions were made for us and the only thing we ever hoped for was joy.
Whatever the reason might be, here is our recipe for, without exaggeration, THE best Banana Walnut Loaf. We love the crunch and bitterness of the walnuts against the fluffy and heavenly banana scented cake but feel free to omit them if you wish.
- 2 cups plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 ⅛ cups light brown sugar
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 ripe medium-large bananas, mashed
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- ⅓ cup chopped walnuts (for decorating)
- Preheat oven to 325F/ 160C. Grease a 9x5x3 loaf pan and dust with flour.
- Blend the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
- Mix the egg, sugar, and vegetable oil until combined.
- Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and once mixed, add the buttermilk, vanilla, and mashed bananas; lightly mix until it is all combined (do not overmix, otherwise you’ll end up with a rock hard loaf!)
- Fold in ½ cup chopped walnuts and pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
- Top the batter with remaining walnuts.
- Bake for 45-75 minutes (depending on your oven) until a toothpick comes out clean
Pro-tip: Serve toasted with a generous slather of Nutella. We guarantee you’ll be transported back to that nursery faster than you can say Mary Poppins.