You may notice a couple of things about the above image… The gorgeously fluffy walnut banana slice, served with naturally sweetened maple yoghurt icing of course, but also perhaps the plates stacked on top of an upturned breakfast bowl (because we just finished tiling our ground floor when this shot was taken and all my usual props were packed away – what is a girl to do but improvise?)!
Good news though – the tiling is done (and is looking fabulous) and I will have my hands back on my props as soon as I move all the furniture back in its proper place. And now I am addicted to renovating – I am planning to get the downstairs powder room and laundry done next. Someone please stop me!
Walnut banana slice – perfect weekend breakfast
This past weekend I went away for a girls’ weekend. We spent two glorious days and nights in Jervis Bay, which a gorgeous area in New South Wales, only about 3 hours from Canberra.
Since it’s still winter here in Australia (spring is just round the corner though! Can you tell I’m excited?), there was no swimming but we made up for it in other ways… Walks on the beach, a lot of chatting, beautiful food and wine, a spot of shopping and, dare I say, karaoke! Sitting on a deck with girlfriends in the morning sun, sharing a lovely breakfast, is so so relaxing.
I brought a big container of my healthy cookie granola with me to share around for breakfast and I am proud to report it got rave reviews. We had served it with yoghurt, homemade jam and fruit, or simply with some milk. We also had gorgeous sourdough, fresh pastries, plenty of fruit, cheeses, deli meats and lovely company. What more could you ask for?
That feeling of freedom when you can have an extra drink because you’re not driving, sleep in because there’s no kids waking you at ridiculous o’clock and nothing you “have to” do, just all this luxurious time stretching in front of you, is so addictive and so good for your mental health. I haven’t felt recharged like this in a long time, I have to say!
And yes, I wish I had brought some of this slice with me… let me tell you why!
Why banana slice and not banana bread?
This banana slice is great for many reasons, including:
- it does not use flour – it’s made with almond meal and tapioca flour instead of regular flour but you won’t be able to tell. The almond meal lends it a slightly nutty taste and the tapioca and baking powder a fluffy texture. As a result, the slice is gluten free and wheat free.
- it’s dairy free – no dairy to be seen in this recipe, no siree.
- it is refined sugar free – sweetened naturally with bananas and a quarter a cup of maple syrup.
- you can bake it way quicker than banana bread – because it’s lower and spreads thinner, it doesn’t take that long to bake. Banana breads often take up to an hour in the oven, but this little beauty takes half that time.
- perfect for using up those brown bananas – come on, if you’re like me, you definitely have some! And aren’t we all over banana bread a little? This is such a great alternative. Let’s start a Covid banana baking craze vol.2!
- it can be served alone but it’s best with a drizzle of maple yoghurt – the maple yoghurt adds a beautiful contrast to the fluffy cakey texture of the slice and completes the flavour profile beautifully. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love a bit of an icing on their cake? This is a great, and guilt-free, alternative and comes together in seconds – just whisk some yoghurt (in this case dairy free) together with a bit of maple syrup and vanilla. I promise you won’t miss the standard icing full of sugar once you’ve tried this version!
Unfortunately though, because of the almond meal and the walnuts, the slice is not nut free and, if your school prohibits nuts, it won’t make a good addition to your kids’ lunch boxes. You could try and substitute seed meal for the almond meal and omit the walnuts if you wanted to make this nut free but I haven’t tried that yet – so if you do, let me know how you went!
Fluffy walnut banana slice [gluten, dairy and refined sugar free]
Walnut banana slice – wet ingredients
- 2 small eggs
- 2 medium ripe bananas
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 tbsp MCT oil (or melted coconut oil, cooled)
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
Walnut banana slice – dry ingredients
- 2.5 cups almond meal
- 1 cup tapioca flour (try to find one which is 100% natural, without preservatives)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda or baking powder
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch salt
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped or smashed into pieces with your meat mallet or rolling pin (i.e. place nuts in a sealed ziploc bag, out of which you've pushed out all excess air before sealing, and have at it! Pieces of all different sizes, from halves to nut powder, are perfect. Great stress reliever too.)
Walnut banana slice
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C (350F). Line a 20cm x 20cm (8in × 8in) baking tin with baking paper and set aside.
- Mix all the wet ingredients together in a medium bowl or a measuring cup.
- Whisk all the dry ingredients (including nuts) together in another large mixing bowl.
- Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and gently mix together until well incorporated.
- Pour into the prepared baking tin and bake for about 30 minutes until browned on top and the top (including the middle) springs back under a light touch of your fingertips (or a toothpick comes out clean).
Maple yoghurt icing
- While the slice is baking, make your "icing". Simply mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl with a spoon.
- When the cake is cooled and cut, pour some over your individual slice and eat immediately. (I find it's better just to "ice" the portion you're eating and not cover the whole slice as you normally would with icing – this helps the slice stay nice and fluffy.)
- Store the remaining yoghurt icing covered in the fridge.
If you are pouring icing over your slice as generously as I have (and there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t), you may need to make two lots of the yoghurt icing. Just sayin’ – it’s delicious.
This recipe is based on Taavi Moore’s recipe for pecan banana bread cake which you can find here.
You have found this delightful recipe on Once a Foodie – onceafoodie.com. It was lovely to see you. Please come visit again.