Good Taste Magazine March 2013 has four variations on a basic banana bread: Bonza Banana, Choc Chunk Banana, Raspberry and Coconut and finally the one MrsDrWho chose: Apple and Pecan.
It's a loaf made with oil and so it's all just mixed into one bowl. You need green cooking apples and here it's always Granny Smiths. I toasted my pecans while the oven was heating up, they only needed a few minutes and you need to watch them in case they go too far.
I can smell the banana bread cooking as I type this and it smells absolutely wonderful.
The top is brushed with honey, but as MrsDrWho doesn't like honey I missed that step completely. You could use some apricot jam, golden or maple syrup instead. You will need a 20 x 10 x 7cm** loaf tin.
Apple Pecan Banana Bread makes 1 loaf
- 20g butter
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups halved pecans
- 340g (2 1/4 cups ) plain flour
- 2 tspn ground cinnamon
- 2 tspn baking powder
- 1/4 tspn bicarbonate of soda
- pinch of salt
- 155g (3/4 cup) light brown sugar
- 250ml (1cup) light olive oil
- 3 eggs, lightly whisked
- 1 tspn vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups mashed banana
- 40ml (2 tbspn) honey
Preheat oven to 180*C. (ETA 160*C fan-forced) Reserve 1/2 cup of the nicest pecan halves and then roughly chop the rest and toast in the heating oven for a few minutes. Be sure to keep an eye on them. Set aside to cool.
Prepare the apples.
Melt the butter in a pan and then measure out the sugar and put two tbspn (that's 8 tspn) into the pan with the butter and add the chopped apple. Once the butter and sugar melt and bubble, cook for 5 minutes or until the apple is tender and set aside to cool a little.
Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarb soda, cinnamon and salt into a mixing bowl and then stir in the rest of the brown sugar. Make a well in the centre and add the oil, eggs and vanilla and stir gently until just combined.
Grease and line a loaf tin.
Scoop the mixture in and smooth the top. Arrange the 1/2 cup pecans on top and then bake for 1 1/4 hours.
I always turn the tin around half way through even though the oven is fan-forced. Half way through I turned the temperature down to 160*C and it was cooked after 1 hour and 5 minutes. The oven was too hot, because the banana bread has risen too sharply and cracked. I've made a note of this at the beginning of the recipe method.
Cool in the tin for 20 minutes and then turn out onto a rack to cool completely. In a warmer climate you need to keep the banana bread in the fridge and it really only lasts for 3 or 4 days either way.
** My tin was actually 24 x 10 x 7