Ba­nana, wal­nut and salted maple-syrup loaf with maple mas­car­pone

Country Life Every Week - - Kitchen Garden Cook Walnuts -

Serves 4 In­gre­di­ents

225g ripe ba­nanas (about 3),

mashed 100ml maple syrup 125g un­salted but­ter, soft,

but not greasy 75g mus­co­v­ado sugar 1tspn vanilla-bean paste 2 eggs 250g self-rais­ing flour 50ml milk 50g wal­nuts, chopped 1 ba­nana, halved length­ways

50ml maple syrup for

brush­ing A cou­ple of pinches of sea

salt

250g mas­car­pone 50ml maple syrup Method

Pre­heat your oven to 180˚C/350˚f/gas mark 6. Grease and flour a one-litre loaf tin, tap­ping out the ex­cess.

In a medium-sized bowl, mash the ripe ba­nanas with the back of a fork and set aside.

Use an elec­tric hand mixer to cream the but­ter and sugar to­gether in a large bowl un­til pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat un­til even. Pour in the maple syrup, add the mashed ba­nanas and beat again. Tip in the flour and mix briefly un­til just com­bined, adding the milk to loosen the mix­ture, be­fore fold­ing through the chopped wal­nuts.

Im­me­di­ately pour into the pre­pared tin. Care­fully place the halves of the sin­gle ba­nana on top of the mix­ture and bake for about 30–35 min­utes or un­til a skewer comes out clean.

Re­move the loaf from the oven and, when it’s still hot and in the tin, use a skewer to make holes in the top. Brush with the maple syrup and then sprin­kle with sea salt. Leave in the tin un­til it’s cool enough to han­dle and then place on a serv­ing plate.

Use a fork to mix the maple syrup into the mas­car­pone and serve this along­side the warm ba­nana bread. If there’s any­thing left the day af­ter, you can slice the loaf and spread this on as a maple but­ter.

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