Banana, Cardamom and Walnut 100% Spelt Loaf

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I have just made this as a belated birthday cake for my mum. It took 20 minutes to prepare and is spicy, soft and very moist from the bananas and dates. Walnuts give texture. Excitingly, it can be eaten by some for whom normal wheat is a problem. We will have it with a dollop of cool Greek yogurt like my friend Lily serves at her place, Café Viva on Choumert Road in Peckham. She makes the best banana bread I’ve had in London.

Ingredients:

185g wholemeal spelt flour

180g soft brown sugar

75g, soft unsalted butter

1 egg

1 heaped teaspoon, bicarbonate of soda

4 smallish, ripe bananas

8 dates, soaked in hot water for 15 minutes, chopped up

8 walnuts, chopped up

4 cardamom pods, husks removed and ground up in a pestle and mortar

1 teaspoon, ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon, vanilla extract

pinch of salt

How to make:

Pre-heat oven to 170 degrees celsius. Grease and line a medium sized loaf tin with baking paper.

Mash up bananas, mix well with sugar, butter, spices, vanilla extract, dates, the egg, the salt and the walnuts in a mixing bowl, using a wooden spoon. Sift in the flour and add in any wholemeal bits that get caught in the sieve. Mix thoroughly and spoon into the tin.

Bake for one hour. When a knife or skewer comes out of the cake clean, it is cooked.

Eat with:

Butter spread on it, or Greek yogurt and a dusting of cinnamon.

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