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Recently I had a couple of occasions for which I needed easy, crowd-pleasing cakes. Banana bread is that cake. Like rainbows, kitten cats and puppy dogs, everyone loves banana bread.

And banana bread can be made even better with the addition of some dark chocolate chips for a healthy-yet-indulgent treat.

This cake is so adaptable too – I made it again without the walnuts for someone who couldn’t eat walnuts, and I can’t stop thinking about how great it would be with chopped toffee instead of chocolate chips.

And it goes without saying that its moist and delicious.

Here’s what you need to make it! The original recipe is here

  • 100g chocolate chips (its nice with dark or plain or white would be good too, or half dark/half white)
  • 100g chopped walnuts (or any other nut you desire, or omit them if you like)
  • 3 very ripe bananas – they do need to be very ripe so if you know when you’re going to make this cake, buy the banana’s about a week ahead to give them time to ripen. Also, did you know that you can unpeel and freeze ripe bananas and then use them (for smoothies or THIS CAKE!) whenever you want?
  • 2 eggs
  • 50g butter
  • 250g plain flour
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarb of soda
  • 1tbsp vanilla extract

Before you start work, line your loaf tin with some parchment paper so that it will be super easy to lift out and cool when its done. It also makes it look pretty!

Preheat the oven to 16o degrees and get cooking! First, soften the butter and then add the sugar and mix well. Now add the eggs and vanilla extract

Next, mash up your three bananas (a potato masher works well, if your banana’s are a little less ripe than you’d like then add a splash of orange juice) and add them to the butter-sugar-eggs mixture. You will now have a luminously yellow mixture!

In a second bowl, weigh out the flour, bicarb and baking powder, and add the chopped chocolate and walnuts into the same bowl (coating them in flour means that they won’t sink to the bottom of the cake). Then add the lovely dry ingredients to the lovely wet ingredients and bam, CAKE BATTER.

Lovely luminous yellow banana-y batter.

Mix it up until everythings incorporated. If you’re making two banana cakes at once, you’ll need to deploy some superhuman upper arm strength here.

Deposit the yellow batter into your tin and sprinkle over some sugar. I am a big fan of the crunchy sugar crust – I used vanilla sugar the second time I made this cake (and probably put about 3 tablespoons of sugar on the cake!) and it was great.

Demerera sugar would be fab too.

Bake for about 60-70 minutes in the middle of the oven until the cake is completely cooked through. Even though its a moist banana cake, you should be able to insert a toothpick or knife and have it come out without batter on when its ready.

The second best thing about this cake is the amazing banana scented fug that spreads through your house as its baking.

The best thing is how it tastes.