If we are looking for insurance against want and oppression, we will find it only in our neighbors’ prosperity and goodwill and, beyond that, in the good health of our worldly places, our homelands. If we were sincerely looking for a place of safety, for real security and success, then we would begin to turn to our communities – and not the communities simply of our human neighbors but also of the water, earth, and air, the plants and animals, all the creatures with whom our local life is shared.Wendell Berry
Last week Ben and I popped over to the neighbours, to sit and chat over tea and cake. On the agenda was the environment, helping the critters around our land who are starving from drought or dispossessed by land clearing, and of course some talk about politics and the world in general.
I whipped up this Banana Bread from a handful of ingredients, because I’d be a crap neighbour if I turned up empty-handed, and also, doesn’t everyone want a piece of cake with their cuppa? This Banana Bread is truly delicious, and it bakes up equally well with ordinary flour or a gluten-free blend. It’s perfectly delicous on it’s own, but it’s sublime with butter, and even better with the neighbours’ homemade organic Davidson Plum jam.
I hope you enjoy it too.
PS – All the mugs and plates in the pictures were made by my neighbour Richard Jones, with help from his wife, Jo Immig. Their business, Rainforest Ceramics, donates a portion of every item sold towards protecting endangered rainforest. Please go check them out!
- 3 large very ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
- 115 grams (4 ounces) butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1.5 cups flour (can be gluten-free or wheat flour)
- 1 slightly rounded teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 3/4 cup soft brown sugar
- An extra banana for decoration
- Preheat your oven to 180C (moderate or 355F), and line a loaf tin with non-stick paper, or grease and flour it well.
- Beat the butter and sugar to a cream and then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing at low speed until it is combined.
- Dump in the bananas and mix again.
- Sift the flour with the bicarb and cinnamon. Add the flour mix little by little on low speed until mixture is thick and creamy.
- Spoon into prepared pan.
- Press slices of raw banana into the top of the cake.
- Bake for 45 minutes, or until the top springs back lightly when pressed.
- Cool in the tin.