The majority of my baking gets taken into the lab, where it gets enthusiastically devoured by students and staff alike. But I’m always a bit stuck when it comes to alcoholic baked goods. Getting people a little tipsy off cake seems to be a particular skill of mine, and whilst the lab would no doubt happily scoff any alcoholic offerings down, particularly on a Friday when nobody really gets much work done anyway, the lab manager might not be too happy. Since he wasn’t in the best of moods last week, I decided that the spiced banana and rum loaf that I wanted to try out should probably wait until poker night, since not all the rum bakes out.
If I’d played my cards right (badum-tschhh!), this loaf could have been a sneaky ploy to get people tipsy in a vague attempt to increase my chances of winning. But I ate just as much as everybody else, so I obviously missed a trick there. I was actually expecting to have a few slices left over, but by halfway through the evening, a few crumbs and a slight increase in noise levels were the only evidence of the cake’s previous existence. The spices both in the bread and the spiced rum really make this a perfect winter offering.
This month’s AlphaBakes is being hosted by Ros, The More Than Occasional Baker and the challenge letter is “R,” so I’m sending this in as my entry; R for rum. As I said previously, the rum does not all bake out, though I’ll admit that I couldn’t actually taste the alcohol itself, which probably says a fair bit about me. All bar one
fellow alcoholic other person could taste it though – not overwhelmingly so, but they could tell it was there, and it gives the bread a lovely warming feeling. I briefly considered adding nuts to the bread as well, but decided to let the spiced rum take centre stage. Sometimes simple is best.
Spiced banana & rum loaf
Makes 1 loaf
Adapted from Pastry Affair
Defrosted frozen bananas would work perfectly well. Use whatever spiced rum you like, though remember that the flavour really does come through, so supermarket own brand is unlikely to be a good idea – paint-stripper will always taste of paint-stripper, even if you bake it. The loaf is best at least one day later, so that the rum flavours have had time to develop. It will keep well wrapped in tin foil or in an airtight container for several days. Remember that not all the rum bakes out, so perhaps don’t serve any to children.
125g unsalted butter, softened
150g light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large, ripe bananas (defrosted frozen bananas are fine)
250g all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground nutmeg
Pinch of salt
150ml spiced rum (I used Kraken spiced rum)
1. Butter a medium or large loaf tin. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C.
2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar with an electric whisk until light and fluffy. Whisk the eggs in one by one, mixing well after each one.
3. In a small bowl, mash the bananas with a fork, then add to the butter mixture with the vanilla extract and beat together with the electric whisk, until fully mixed together.
4. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, spices and salt into the butter mixture bowl and stir together. Once fully mixed, stir in the rum.
5. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 1h-1h10 mins, until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool in the tin for 10 mins before turning out to cool completely on a wire rack.
Enjoy! (Responsibly, of course.)