While on a trip over to the island (Parksville, BC) for a wedding, I came across the most adorable fruit and vegetable stand. We scored 5 scrumptious green figs. When I returned from our weekend away, I had 2 perfectly overripe bananas on the counter. This is what I refer to as a "meant-to-be moment" - I could make a Banana Fig loaf for tea time. I was also lucky enough to use a special nipah- palm sugar from Sarawak, Malaysia, called gula apong, which lends a salted caramel undertone to the loaf (as a substitute for the brown sugar). This is a lovely and easy recipe to make with kids too! Enjoy fresh out of the oven (okay, you might need to wait for about 15 minutes) - or keep for a day or two for an anytime-snack.
Banana Fig Loaf
Yield: 9"x 5" loaf pan
Prep Time: 15 mins
Baking Time: 1 hour
Prepare Ahead: No
Line a 9" x 5" loaf tin with parchment paper. It would be useful to have an overhang, it makes it easy to remove later.
2 fresh overripe bananas
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed (feel free to add 1 to 2 tablespoons for a sweeter loaf)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
1 cup chopped fresh figs
sliced figs for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350F.
In a large non-reactive bowl, smash the bananas well with a fork until mushy (perfect for your kid to help with!)
Add the melted butter, whisk it into the smashed bananas. Next, the vanilla and eggs can go in.
Add the brown sugar and mix thoroughly.
Place a sieve over the mixture, hooking it to the top of the bowl. Sift in the flour, baking soda and salt. Fold gently. Next, add and fold in the chopped figs.
Place the batter in the loaf pan, arrange your beautiful sliced figs on top. Place the loaf on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes. Use a skewer to check for doneness. You might need another 10 to 15 minutes, until the top of the loaf springs back to the touch.
Allow to cool for about 10 to 15 minutes on a cooling rack, in the pan, before removing and enjoying!
The loaf can be kept outside for a day or two, wrapped in plastic wrap after cooling completely so that it doesn't sweat.