Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Curtis Stone's Banana Bread with Lots of Toasted Walnuts

Many of us have fond memories of the wonderful foods and tastes we grew up with. We didn't realise how good that food was then when we took it granted daily. The warm, fuzzy feelings about our carefree and joyous childhood and perhaps even more, about the positive role and influence our mothers played in our growth and maturation. 

My mama is in the classic scene, a stay-at-home housewife, and therefore she is the boss of the kitchen. She enters the kitchen with joy in her heart. I remember as a small girl, watching my mama baking in her kitchen. She is a great cook, but she hardly bakes in the years later. Her pandan chiffon cakes and banana cakes are all I remember tasting and eating in her kitchen.

Seeing Zoe from Happy Baking for Kids' post on Curtis Stone's banana bread caught my eyes. I still have a bag of walnuts I hauled back from Jerusalem. I knew I had to bake this recipe. 

First of all, let's start with the banana cake. It looks and tastes more like a cake than bread. It is moist and light. The heaps of toasted walnuts bring my anticipation for this cake to yet another level. I must say this is the best banana cake I've ever eaten! Alright, maybe not the best. But one of the best really! And it's homemade! How awesome is that. All those emotions come rushing back front and centre in my memories of my mama's banana cakes. In short, I highly recommend it. 

Now, if you were to ask me where my love for baking come from, I would smile and say my mama. Well, I certainly enjoy baking and have received encouraging feedback, so I must be doing something right.

Now I know who do I inherit my dancing vibes from. 

Adapted from Curtis Stone

250g all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
150g sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups coarsely mashed very ripe bananas
2 tbsp yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups walnuts, toasted and chopped

1. Position a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat oven to 175C (or 160C fan forced). Line a 23cm by 10cm by 8cm metal loaf pan with baking paper. 

2. Spread 1 1/2 cups of walnuts on a large heavy baking sheet. Bake, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes, or until the walnuts are toasted and a nut broken in half is golden in the centre. Let cool, then coarsely chop.

3. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt into a bowl.

4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the sugar and eggs for about 10 minutes or until pale and thick. The mixture should form a ribbon when the beater is lifted. Gradually beat in the vegetable oil. Beat in the bananas, yoghurt and vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add the flour mixture and mix just until blended. Using a large flexible spatula, fold 1 cup of toasted walnuts into the batter. 

5. Spread the batter in the loaf pan. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/2 cup of walnuts. Bake for 1 hour, or until the top is browned and a wooden toothpick inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean. If the cake is browned before it tests done, tent the top with aluminum foil. Let cool in the pan on a wire cake rack for 15 minutes. 

6. Invert the banana bread onto the rack and turn right side up. Slice and serve warm, or let cool completely before serving. 

Notes to self: 
I mixed all 1 1/2 cups of toasted walnuts in step 4! Thus, I had none to sprinkle the top! The importance of reading before baking. 

I'm submitting this to Cook Like a Star ALL Stars Anniversary organised by Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids, Joyce of bakingflavours and Mich of Piece of Cake


  1. Hi Dalyn,

    Nice to hear that you like this banana bread. Many of my blogging friends that baked this recipe all like it. Are you interested to link your post with our Cook Like a Star event? We are cooking any recipes from Donna Hay, Barefoot Contessa, Jamie Oliver, Pioneer woman, Curtis Stone, Bill Granger, Masterchef and Martha Stewart for the whole month of Mar and Apr for our event anniversary.

    All you need to do is to mention us in your post and submit your link at our blog, http://www.bakeforhappykids.com/2014/03/recalling-my-teenager-days-indonesian.html

    Any problem with linking? Please let me know. Cheers!


    1. Hi Zoe,

      I am glad to do so. I thought I followed your recipe and not qualified to link to your Cook Like a Star event.

    2. Hi Dalyn,

      You are too modest! Happy to have you linking with us :D


  2. Hi Dalyn,
    Your banana cake looks perfectly baked, with nice golden brown crust. This banana cake is quite popular with everyone!
    Great to see you linking with CLAS!
    Be sure to join us again! :)

    1. Hi Joyce,
      It's such a joy to me to chance upon the events hosted by you and Zoe and linking my bakes (and hopefully some simple cooking recipes) to them. This banana cake recipe is definitely a keeper. Gonna bake one for my mama soon.

  3. I have tried baking this cake before and loved it! Looking at yours now made me feel like baking another one!

    1. Hi Jeannie,
      Let's do it! I've baked another one last weekend. Even my 2 year old nephew loves it.

  4. Your banana bread looks delicious! This is an excellent recipe.

    1. Hi Mich,
      Thank you! It tastes as good as it looks. It's great that the the food bloggers are sharing this wonderful recipe.