6 Tips For a Sublime Mary Berry's Banana Bread

6 Tips For a Sublime Mary Berry's Banana Bread

Banana bread is a classic treat for tea time or breakfast. Inspired by Mary Berry, the renowned British culinary author and presenter, this Mary Berry’s Banana Bread recipe is straightforward, quick, and delicious. Here’s how to whip up this delightful treat in your own kitchen.

Ingredients for Mary Berry’s Banana Bread:

  • 100g of softened butter
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons of milk

Equipment:

  • Loaf tin (about 20cm x 12.5cm)
  • Mixing bowl
  • Fork (for mashing bananas)
  • Electric mixer or wooden spoon
  • Skewer or toothpick (for testing doneness)
  • Wire rack (for cooling)

Method:

  1. Preparation: Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C for fan ovens) or Gas Mark 4. Grease and line your loaf tin with baking parchment.
  2. Mix Wet Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, cream the softened butter and caster sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten eggs, mixing well after each addition.
  3. Add Bananas: Stir in the mashed bananas. The riper the bananas, the better Mary Berry’s Banana Bread, they add natural sweetness and moisture to your banana bread.
  4. Combine Dry Ingredients: In a separate bowl, sift together the self-raising flour and baking soda. This helps to incorporate air and ensure an even rise.
  5. Combine Mixtures: Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, folding gently until just combined. Be careful not to overmix, as this can make the bread dense.
  6. Add Milk: Finally, stir in the milk to loosen the mixture. The batter should be of a dropping consistency.
  7. Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin and smooth the top. Place in the preheated oven and bake for about 1 hour, or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  8. Cool: Remove from the oven and let it cool in the tin for a few minutes. Then, turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. Serve: Slice and serve your Mary Berry’s Banana Bread as is, or toast it and enjoy with butter.

Tips For a Sublime Mary Berry’s Banana Bread

  • Optimising Banana Ripeness:
  • The best bananas for Mary Berry’s Banana Bread are those that are overripe. Look for bananas that have lots of brown spots on their skin; the more, the better. Overripe bananas are softer and sweeter, which adds natural sweetness and moisture to your bread.
  • If your bananas aren’t ripe enough, you can speed up the process by placing them in a brown paper bag for a day or two. The ethylene gas released by the bananas will be trapped in the bag and accelerate the ripening.
  • Storing Banana Bread:
  • To keep your banana bread moist and fresh, store it in an airtight container. This prevents it from drying out.
  • If you plan to eat it within a few days, keeping it at room temperature is fine. However, in warmer climates or during hot weather, consider storing it in the refrigerator to prevent spoilage.
  • For longer storage, banana bread freezes exceptionally well. Wrap the loaf or individual slices in cling film, then place them in a freezer bag. When you’re ready to eat, defrost at room temperature or warm slices in a toaster or oven.
  • Adding Nuts or Chocolate Chips:
  • Adding about a half cup of chopped walnuts or pecans to your banana bread batter can give a delightful crunch and nutty flavour. Toasting the nuts lightly before adding them to the batter can enhance their flavour.
  • Chocolate chips are another popular add-in. Dark, milk, or white chocolate chips can be mixed into the batter to add a sweet, gooey texture. About half to three-quarters of a cup should be sufficient.
  • Mixing Techniques:
  • When combining the wet and dry ingredients, use a folding technique with a spatula rather than vigorous stirring. This helps keep the bread light and airy.
  • Overmixing the batter can develop the gluten in the flour, leading to a denser, chewier texture, which isn’t ideal for banana bread.
  • Baking Tips:
  • Every oven is different, so it’s a good idea to check your Mary Berry’s Banana Bread a few minutes before the recommended baking time. Insert a skewer or toothpick into the centre of the bread. If it comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, the bread is done.
  • If you find the top of your banana bread is browning too quickly while baking, loosely cover it with a piece of aluminium foil.
  • Serving Suggestions:
  • Banana bread is versatile. It can be served as is, or for an extra treat, try toasting slices and spreading them with butter or cream cheese.
  • Mary Berry’s Banana Bread pairs wonderfully with a cup of tea or coffee, making it perfect for breakfast or an afternoon snack.

By following these detailed tips, you can elevate your banana bread baking skills and consistently create a wonderfully moist, flavourful loaf that is sure to impress. Enjoy the process and the delicious results!

Mary Berry’s banana bread recipe is a testament to the beauty of simplicity in baking. This easy-to-make treat is perfect for using up overripe bananas and is sure to be a hit with family and friends!

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