Love bake nourish

Banana cinnamon cake

After dealing with some health issues at the end of last year, I decided to take a step back and simplify my life. The important things had to come first. I needed time and space to look after my little family. And as the carer of that family I also had to take care of me! So for the last few months I’ve been taking time out from the blog. Putting back in after a hectic year writing both for here and for High Tea Cast.

Banana cinnamon cake

For the first month I didn’t bake at all (there may have been a tiny exception for someone’s birthday). It felt good and I think we all benefited from the reduction in sugar. But then as time went on I could no longer resist. The wee one loves it and I really want to teach her the skills. So while continuing to bake sweet treats for the occasional birthday I have been trying to make my “everyday” bakes more nourishing.

I rarely bake the same cake twice but after trying the banana cinnamon cake from Love Bake Nourish: Healthier cakes, bakes and puddings full of fruit and flavour with my trusty sidekick I knew I would be back. It is delicious. Despite using wholegrain flour which can often be heavy and dry this is light and moist. Not to mention the flavour. Plump sultanas soaked in earl grey tea add an extra flavour dimension to the banana and cinnamon. So basically this is my new favourite cake and I may be making it a lot.

Although I intend to bring you more delicious muffin recipes at some point, I am still in need of some care and attention myself as well as trying to get my head around a low cobalt diet. So please be patient with me and in the meantime I’d highly recommend Love Bake Nourish.

Love Bake Nourish book

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Carrot cake muffin

It wouldn’t be Monday without a muffin even if it is rather late in the day.

Half eaten Carrot cake muffin

Winter has arrived with a vengeance lately. None of us wanted to get out of bed this morning to face the cold icy day but alas it had to be done. It was the idea of baking a carrot cake muffin that made me climb out from under the duvet. Cheerfully orange and spicy these didn’t disappoint. They were a perfect treat for the wee one just don’t mention the hidden veg!

Carrot Cake muffin tower

The only thing I would do to improve them is to use wholemeal or spelt instead of rice flour. That said they do make a delicious gluten free treat.

Continue reading Carrot cake muffin

Banana loaf muffin

Banana loaf muffin

Do you remember the ultimate question? If not, here’s a quick reminder, should I bake banana loaf or banana muffins? Is it possible to switch the recipes around? Let’s try! The first mash up (sorry!), banana muffins disguised as loaf worked really well so next up I attempted banana loaf as muffins.

I’m sure you’re familiar with lemon curd (a lemony spread or dessert made with lemon juice and eggs) but have any of you heard of banana curd? Curiosity got the better of me when I saw a jar in my local farm shop. I just had to buy it and as it turns out the smooth banana paste is certainly a nice alternative to the usual curds spread on toast or I’m sure however you choose to eat it.

In this case it is the perfect addition to these spicy gingerbread-esque muffins from one of my favourite recipe books, The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook.

Banana curd in banana loaf muffin

Have you tried an unusual curd? Did you incorporate it into your baking?

Banana Muffin

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Even in the heat I feel the need to bake. Especially when there are overripe bananas around that won’t last more than a day or maybe two. I would usually bake banana loaf. There are two recipes that I always fall back on. One is a spicy banana bread almost like a ginger bread and the other perhaps better described as banana tea loaf has strands of banana running through it. Both delicious but muffins are the name of the game right now so muffins it is.

From my favourite book of the moment these banana muffins are a taste extravaganza with not only bananas but dates, cinnamon and pecans as well. They are deliciously moist with a little bit of crunch. One of my trusty testers (it’s a difficult job but someone’s got to do it) suggested they would make the most amazing and interesting sticky toffee puddings for an overindulgent dinner party. Yum!

Even without toffee sauce these are delicious and one I would perhaps attempt again. Maybe  using wholegrain flour? (And definitely having my camera at the ready as soon as they come out of the oven as they dropped within 10 minutes!)

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Continue reading Banana Muffin