Cooking Time: 1hr. 25 minutes
This date and banana loaf is enjoyed by all of the family. Studded with sweet dates, this loaf has natural sweetness from fruit, meaning you can use less sugar.
8 oz. stoned dates, coarsely chopped
2 small very ripe bananas
1 3/8 sticks slightly salted butter, softened
3 1/2 fl.oz. milk
Freshly grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
3 1/2 fl. oz. water
3/4 cup superfine sugar
2 1/4 cups all- purpose flour
2 Tsp. Baking soda
•Put 7 oz. of the dates in a small saucepan with the lemon zest and juice and measured water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes until the dates are soft and pulpy. Mash the mixture with a fork until fairly smooth. Let cool.
•Mash the bananas to a purée in a bowl, then add the butter, sugar, eggs, milk, flour and baking soda and beat together until the mixture is smooth.
•Spoon a third of the mixture into a greased and lined 2 1/2 pint loaf pan and level the surface. Spoon over half the date purée and spread evenly. Add half the remaining loaf mixture and spread with the remaining purée. Add the remaining loaf mixture and level the surface.
•Sprinkle with the reserved dates and bake in a preheated oven at 325 for about 1 hour 20 minutes or until risen and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes then loosen around the sides and transfer to a wire rack. Peel off the parchment paper and let loaf cool completely.
Katherine S. Seda