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This healthy banana bread with chopped prunes and whole meal flour is packed with a good measure of fibre and nutrients. The recipe from The Australian Women’s Weekly will help you start your day with a delicious and equally nutritious breakfast especially if have GI issues like bloating or dyspepsia that refuse to get better.

WHOLEMEAL BANANA & PRUNE BREAD

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups (240g) wholemeal self-raising flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons lemon rind, finely grated

100 g unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup (165g) packed dark brown sugar

2 eggs, room temperature

1 1/2 cups mashed banana

1 cup (170g) prunes, chopped coarsely

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 14cm x 21cm loaf pan; line the base and long sides with baking paper.

  • Extend paper 2cm over sides. In a large bowl, sift flour and cinnamon; add rind, butter, sugar and eggs.

  • Beat with an electric mixer on low till all the ingredients are combined. Increase the speed to medium.

  • Beat mixture until smooth. Stir in banana and prunes. Spread mixture into pan and bake about 1 hour.

  • Skewer should come out clean and dry after testing from the centre. Stand bread in pan for 5 minutes.

  • Turn, top-side up, on wire rack to cool to room temperature. Cut into a few thick slices before serving.

Wholemeal Banana & Prune Bread

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My latest péché mignon is the anything-blueberry-dessert and with the abundance of blueberries on the market at the moment, I do not need an excuse to be baking with them almost every other day. Other than my standard blueberry muffins, I like to fold them in pancake batter or scatter them over a colourful fruit salad or simply as a topping for my boring morning muesli. This blueberry crumb cake from BarbaraBakes is packed with juicy berries and is nicely complimented by the addition of lemon zest. I chose to omit the lemon glaze for fear of going over the top with too much sugar, and also because I did not want anything to prevent me from focusing on my blueberries.

BLUEBERRY CRUMB CAKE

Ingredients:

For the Blueberry Cake

2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kitchen salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup white granulated sugar

2 large eggs, room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup full cream milk

1 tablespoon lemon zest

2 cups fresh blueberries

For the Crumb Topping

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons butter, melted

For the Lemon Icing

1 cup powdered sugar

1-2 tablespoons lemon juice

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 9-inch spring form cake pan with non-stick cooking spray with flour.

  • Prepare topping by combining sugar, flour and butter in a small bowl. Mix until crumbly and set aside.

  • In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy.

  • Add eggs, vanilla and milk. Mix in lemon zest. Add flour mixture and mix just until it is just combined.

  • Stir in blueberries and spread batter evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle the cake with crumb topping.

  • Bake at 350ºF for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

  • Prepare the lemon icing by whisking together powdered sugar and lemon juice to create a thin glaze.

  • Drizzle the icing onto warm cake and cool completely before cutting and serving. ­Makes 12 servings.

Blueberry Crumb Cake

Almost like a Ferrero Rocher, these little hazelnut squares from The Australian Women’s Weekly will, without a doubt, remind you of the famous Italian candy from the very first mouthful. They are a bit labour intensive if you plan to make the hazelnut meal from scratch but you can easily save on time and energy by purchasing a sachet of ground hazelnuts from the nearest supermarket. Be sure to toast the store bought stuff for a couple of minutes in a preheated oven to get rid of the ‘raw’ taste before they go into your cake batter. The milk chocolate topping gives a characteristic Nutella feel to these mini bites but you can switch to dark chocolate, if you fancy a more intense cocoa flavour.

HAZELNUT CHOCOLATE SQUARES

Ingredients:

100g butter, softened

100g caster sugar

2 eggs, room temperature

100g ground hazelnuts

20g all purpose flour

150g milk chocolate

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 180oC. Grease a 8 x 8-inch square baking pan and line base and sides with baking paper.

  • Beat butter and sugar in a medium bowl with electric mixer till light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one by one.

  • Stir in the ground hazelnuts and sifted flour. Spread mixture into prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes.

  • Stand in pan for 15 minutes. Meanwhile prepare glaze by combining the chopped milk chocolate and oil.

  • Stir in a heatproof bowl over a medium saucepan of simmering water until chocolate mixture is smooth.

  • Spread the chocolate glaze over the slice with spatula, and gently tap pan on bench until glaze is smooth.

  • Refrigerate until chocolate glaze is set before cutting it with a sharp knife, wiping the blade between cuts.

  • Store the hazelnut chocolate squares in a large air tight container for up to one week. Makes 16-20 pieces.

Hazelnut Chocolate Squares

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