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Banana bread, that lockdown staple, is a delicious sweet treat using the fruit. How can bakers take their banana bread to the next level?
Sophie Faldo, the winner of the 2017 Great British Bake Off, dispensed her baking expertise for Express.co.uk readers.
She recently discussed her chocolate cake recipe and addition she claims “actually results in better cakes”.
Sophie also addressed American staple, banana bread.
Banana bread recipe tips
One important tip involves the types of bananas you use for the bake.
“Use really ripe bananas..ones with lots of brown spots,” Sophie said.
Sophie went on: “It’s a great way to use up bananas that would otherwise go in the bin!”
Banana bread, however, is about more than just bananas.
Delicious extras can take the bake to the next level.
Sophie adds a number of interesting extras to hers, including an ingredient to make the cake a little more nutritious.
“There are so many extras you can put it in to make it your own,” Sophie said.
“A small handful of dark chocolate chips goes a long way in banana bread.
“I make lots of substitutions in mine to make it a bit more nutritious.
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“I use just a bit of honey, maple syrup, or sweetener instead of sugar and add some protein powder and maybe some walnuts.
“The texture and taste aren’t quite as good but it’s a bit more nutritious and great for a snack between training sessions.”
However, Sophie had a warning on the potential for banana bread to become a ‘health food’.
She added: “Don’t fool yourself into thinking that banana bread is necessarily ‘healthy’.
“The addition of banana, nuts, etc can make it even more calorific than standard cake!”
What is banana bread?
Banana bread was popularised in the 1930s in the US after baking soda and powder became staples of the American pantry.
This was around 60 years after bananas appeared in the US.
It has been suggested the bake became a staple in the US’s Great Depression, to find a way to use overripe bananas.
However, some believe it was made popular thanks to marketing from producers of baking soda and baking powder.
From one popular cake to another, also based on an addition to the better, carrot cake.
Carrot cake is served often with cream cheese icing, and it’s hugely popular – especially in the colder months.
Sophie claims it is probably her favourite cake, and she detailed how to perfect it.
It’s all in the batter, the baking expert says. “For carrot cake, I use quite wet batters,” Sophie said.
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