I mentioned that in preparation for baby led weaning I’ve been cutting out sugar. It’s not going too badly so far! I haven’t *really* cut out sugar, but I’ve been having a lot less cake, and I don’t in all honesty miss it too much. I’d been having a lot of sweet stuff partly because with running around with Milo sometimes I wouldn’t eat at normal times and then when I got home or I stopped for a minute I would realise I was ravenous and I needed food like NOW, and that would usually be a biscuit or four. I’m trying to have a piece of fruit instead, which is actually enough to take the edge off my hunger to actually allow me to prepare something proper.
I’ve also been trying some sugar free baking, well refined sugar free, with fresh and dried fruit as the sweetener. They’re usually low fat as well. Not everything’s been a resounding success, and nothing I’ve made so far is a proper substitute for ‘real’ cake. I’m definitely not going to be using wholemeal flour in anything again, it gives too bready a flavour. But one thing that did work pretty well was this banana bread, so here’s a recipe. I’ve adapted it slightly to get over my dislike of raisins.
100g self raising flour (or plain flour withe 2tsp baking powder)
1tsp ground mixed spice (or similar spices, I think I put 1/2 tsp conammon and 1/2 tsb ginger)
50g unsalted butter
100g dried fruit of your choice, chopped finely of ground to a flour in a food processor (I used dates)
200g mashed ripe bananas (that’s about 2 bananas)
50g finely ground nuts (I used hazelnuts)
extra chopped nuts if you want 9I used walnuts)
1 egg, beaten
Sift flour and spices into a large bowl.
Rub butter in until mix looks like fine breadcrumbs.
Stir in the ground nuts and dried fruit and mix well. If using dates like me, it will be more like a paste than a flour, so take care to distribute evenly to avoid ending up with big datey clumps, and not enough sweetness elsewhere.
Make a well in the middle of the bowl
in a separate bowl, mix the banana and egg and chopped nuts if using.
Put banana mix into the flour and fold
Put a a greased cake tin and bake in a preheated oven at 160 degrees for 45-60mins. It’s ready when a screwer comes out clean.
Leave to cool for 5-10 mins before turning out.