Yesterday I had the rare pleasure of having a whole day at home to myself. What to do? Spinning and knitting were at the forefront of my mind I will admit, however, I quickly shelved those thoughts and decided to catch up on household chores, a spot of gardening was also quickly shelved because of the intense heat outside (it got to 27 degrees), so once I had caught up with the mundane stuff I decided to spend the afternoon baking. 6 bananas past their best in the fruit bowl, no way was I going to waste them.
Banana loaf ~ my favorite recipe is a Mary Berry one. It's quite adaptable and keeps and freezes very well. Not too sweet as I use a little less sugar than the original recipe calls for, moist, cakey, and not at all heavy as I find a lot of banana loaf recipes are. I made 3, 1 for now and 2 for the freezer. Here's the recipe:
115g soft butter
2 very ripe bananas (about 200g peeled weight) mashed very well.
125 g soft brown sugar (original recipe calls for 150g)
2 large eggs
225g self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons milk (I sometimes use buttermilk)
1 loaf tin 900g/2lb capacity, lined with baking paper
Oven 180 deg/160 deg fan/350deg f/gas 4
Put everything except the banana into a large mixing bowl and whisk with an handheld mixer for 1 minute, or beat with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes. Stir in the banana and add any add-ins you may like.
I added 100g of chopped walnuts, half of a pack of white chocolate chips and a few handfuls of dried cranberries to mine, but that was for 3 times the mixture.
Spoon into the lined tin and smooth the top. Bake for about an hour until a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean, if you press the cake lightly in the centre it will feel pretty firm and should be a nice golden brown colour.
Cool for 10 minutes in the tin then turn out onto a cooling rack.
The original recipe has honey icing but I don't make this as I think the cake is sweet enough as it is:
25g icing sugar
2 teaspoons clear honey
1/2 teaspoon cold water
Mix all the ingredients together and drizzle over the cold loaf.
Then I hung the new curtains I made for my bedroom last week:
The fabric I chose is a chocolate brown washed linen, these are lined with a thermal block out lining which will keep the heat in through the Winter. The heading is a 20cm pencil pleat. I'm really happy with them, I wouldn't normally choose such a dark colour for soft furnishings but they go so well with the pale gold colour of the wallpaper.
I'm currently working on a package for a Christmas mini swap, I've learnt myself some new skills but I can't say too much until the package has been received :-)