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#SafeAtHome | Baking Banana bread with @arangoirene, Irene Arango

Irene is a lifestyle blogger and plant-based chef. Originally from Spain, Irene grew up in Argentina before moving to London 12 years ago. Mum to Ariana and Oliver, Irene runs a vegan restaurant in London called NAMA.

Making banana bread has become one of the most popular baking passtimes during the lockdown - it's relatively easy to find the ingredients, it's super-simple to make and it's wholesome and nourishing which brings comfort.

With so many different banana recipes available, we asked Irene to share her go-to recipe in a Childrensalon Instagram takeover. 

Irene says...

"This is an easy vegan banana bread recipe that I make regularly at home. My children and their friends love it! It is also a practical recipe as you can use different flours with an identical tasty result. One thing I really like about making banana bread is that it's virtually mess free - only one bowl needs to get dirty."

Follow Irene | Instagram | NAMA
All images by @arangoirene

    4 May 2020

    - You will need -

    -  4 large bananas (or 5 small ones)

    -  60ml (1/4 cup) plant milk of choice
    -  60ml (1/4 cup) vegetable oil (my favourite is rapeseed, but any work as long as   
       they are mild flavoured, so don't use olive oil!)
    -  60ml (1/4 cup) unrefined caster sugar
    -  260g (2 cups) of flour - self raising, buckwheat or spelt flours all work well.
       Use buckwheat for a gluten free option
    -  1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (omit if using self raising flour)
    -  1 tsp ground cinnamon 
    -  1/2 tsp salt
    -  2 tsp vanilla essence
    -  65g (1/2 cup) vegan chocolate chips or chopped pecans

    * Irene uses all vegan ingredients but you can easily subsitute any ingredient for non-vegan alternatives. 

    - How to make your banana bread -

    -  Preheat your oven to 180°C (approximately 350°F). In a bowl, mash the bananas. 

    -  Add the sugar, plant milk, oil, salt, cinnamon, vanilla and bicarbonate of soda (if needed) and mix. 

    -  Add the flour slowly to incorporate but avoid over mixing. At this stage you can add your chocolate chips or nuts. 

    -  Pour the batter into a mould that you previously covered with greaseproof paper. 

    -  Place the banana bread in the middle of the oven and bake for 40 minutes. 

    -  Cover the banana bread with foil and cook for a further 15 minutes. This is to prevent the banana bread from getting too brown on the top and under cooked in the middle. 

    -  Let it cool down a bit before removing it from the mould and slicing. It tastes even better the next day, toasted and with some coconut oil or vegan butter spread on top.

    - Enjoy!

    If you liked Irene's banana bread, try her healthy chickpea muffin recipe

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