Bananas and Dates, a Delicious Mix
With a couple of perfectly ripe bananas on my counter, the baking pans called out to me once again. There’s nothing like the smell of fresh banana bread wafting through your entire home. Or that of banana macadamia chocolate chunk cookies too! But I also had an enormous supply of the most moist, sweet Medjool dates – due not only to my obsession with them, but also to a funny misunderstanding at the farmer’s market the other day. I had attempted in German to buy a (small !) box from an Italian, who was speaking Swiss German back to me! But that’s a whole other story!
I couldn’t decide whether to make banana bread or to make one of my many recipes using those irresistible dates. So… I didn’t. And what resulted was a most delicious and tender banana date cake, which I will be making many more times in the future.
Feel free to play with the recipe below, add chopped walnuts if you like, maybe a teaspoon of cinnamon too. In general, I always prefer to use whole wheat flour when possible. But white flour will work just fine here as well. I made both a small loaf that I cut up in slices, as well as a pan of muffins, some topped with a little slice of banana.
Banana Date Cake
Makes 2 small loaves or about 20 muffins
2/3 cup (150 grams) butter, softened
7/8 cup (150 grams) brown sugar, packed
1 2/3 cups (200 grams) whole wheat flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 bananas, very ripe
About 10 (200 grams) Medjool dates, roughly chopped
Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celsius). Peel the bananas and smash them with a fork, to obtain a smooth purée. Beat the eggs in a large bowl. Add the sugar and whisk rapidly for one minute. Add the butter and cream together. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, and whisk until combined. Then add the banana purée and the dates in the end. (Do not use an electric mixer when adding the dates if you want a lot of chunks in your cake.)
Pour the batter into a loaf pan or muffin cups. Add small pieces of banana and/or date on top for presentation. Bake the loaf for 35 minutes and muffins for 25. Let cool before removing from pans.