Recipe – Healthy Banana (Nana!) Cake

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I love to bake. In particular, I love to bake full fat, calorie laden, cream cheese frosting, so-sweet-you-feel-a-little-bit-sick kind of cakes. And I give them to people. People from work, my family, friends, whoever will have them really. I’ll admit it, I’m a feeder.

But the problem is this. Even if I tell myself, if I PROMISE myself I won’t eat any cakes after I’ve baked them… I always give in. Or at the very least lick the bowl. It’s impossible not to!

So every now and then, I try to be good and make a “healthy” cake. Let’s be honest, it’s never going to be completely fat/calorie free, but there are definitely ways to make cakes a little lighter on the waistline.

This banana cake is one of my all time favourites, and you’d never know it’s very low in fat! I’ve been making it for years and it never fails me.

FYI – Bananas are called “Nanas” in our house – I’m sure we’re not the only people who call them this?

This recipe is written for a stand mixer as I used my KitchenAid to make it, but up until this week I have always made it by hand! It’s so easy and not at all hard work. It’s also an all-in-one method which means it takes about two minutes to throw together if you have some unexpected guests coming round… Or just have the urge for cake!!

Ingredients

200g plain flour
140g caster sugar
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I LOVE cinnamon so have added quite a lot – decrease this if you’re not too keen)
2 egg whites
3 overripe bananas (the blacker the better, I use the ones that are lurking in my fruitbowl ready for the bin!)
150g raisins or sultanas
A drizzle of honey

Method:

— Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius and line or grease your tin. I normally use a 20x10cm loaf tin but use whatever you have.
— Peel your nanas and break them into two. If you’re using a KitchenAid or stand mixer like me, pop them in the bowl with the beater attachment and get it going on level 2 then 4, for as long as it takes for them to be mashed. The amount of time will all depend on how ripe your nanas are, but mine took about a minute. They should be fairly liquid-y but still with a few lumps in. If you’re doing it by hand just use a fork and squish them against the side of a bowl.

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— Once this is done, add the flour, sugar, baking powder, bicarb and cinnamon to the bowl. Get that mixer going ’til it’s mostly combined.

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— Next add the egg whites and raisins or sultanas. Keep mixing on level 4-6 until all the ingredients are incorporated.
— Pour your your lovely mixture into your tin and drizzle the honey on top. You could also use a sprinkle of demerera sugar to give it a nice crispy top, if you like, but I personally don’t think this cake needs it.

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— Bake for about 50 minutes. I check it after 45. If the skewer comes out clean you’re good to go! Leave it to cool in the tin.

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This cake lasts really well in an airtight container – you could easily get a week out of it, if it’s not scoffed up by then! You can also freeze it if you like. I normally slice a bit as soon as I can and have a nice fat bit with a cup of tea! I’m never allowed the end though, got to leave that for Mike or else I’m in trouble.

Enjoy! Let me know what you think if you make it!

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