Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Wholesome Goodness

It was a yellow sunny afternoon when I baked this loaf of wholemeal banana cake. I almost gave the recipe a miss when I was flipping through a cookbook the other day. There are so many banana cake recipes around that I couldn't help but skip the pages whenever I stumble upon yet another banana cake recipe in a book :')

I was glad that I gave this recipe a second look. I was immediately sold after I went through the ingredient list. What goes into this banana cake seems to promise a loaf loaded with wholesome goodness for our breakfast the next morning.

The amount of butter used for this loaf is relatively little compared to some other recipes which although guarantee deliciously moist and gorgeous looking banana cakes, but, they never failed to put me off with the large amount of fat and sugar that went in there. For this cake, the amount of sugar used is so little that I actually doubt that my kids would even what to take a bite. However, just one slice of this freshly baked cake cleared my doubts right away. The cake got its sweetness mainly from the bananas and the wholemeal flour added a very interesting nutty texture to it. The downside of it...it also made the cake rather crumbly. I wouldn't say the crumbs were extra moist as I suspect the wholemeal flour tends to dry things up a little. Fortunately the bananas worked wonders by providing just the right amount of moisture. Having said that, the cake still tasted delicious when left over night. It certainly was a fuss free way to add some whole grains to my kids' diet. I warmed the last slice in my oven before I enjoyed it over a cup of afternoon tea. It tasted as good as fresh out of oven. This is the kind of cake that you would never feel guilty if you couldn't help but reach out for another slice again and again!

Wholemeal Banana Cake


70g unsalted butter
30g brown sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
200g mashed banana (2 large bananas)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
90g wholemeal flour
90g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda

some sliced banana
some granulated sugar
some cinnamon powder (I omitted this)

  1. Grease the sides of a 3" x 7" loaf pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Sift together plain flour, baking powder and baking soda, set aside.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 180 degC.
  3. With an electric mixer, whisk butter and sugar at low speed till the mixture turns pale and fluffy.
  4. Dribble in beaten egg while whisking at low speed. (Add a little flour to the mixture if it appears to curdle.)
  5. Stir in mashed banana and vanilla extract with a spatula.
  6. Fold in wholemeal flour and the flour mixture and mix with spatula.
  7. Spoon mixture into prepared pan, smooth surface with spatula.
  8. Arrange banana slices on top and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon powder.
  9. Bake for 45 mins until skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. (Cover the top with foil if it start to get overly brown before the baking time is up.) Stand cake in pan for 5 minutes, unmold and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
    Recipe adapted from: Everyday Treats, 日尝甜品


Anonymous said...

Wow, I like this. I agree with you that this is sth won't make me feel guilty even I have one slice after another.

I have never used wholemeal flour for baking, I think I should give it a try one day. Thanks for sharing.

Jackie said...

thank you for sharing, i m going to try it out....jackie

Baking Fiend said...

sure is a healthy loaf! it looks delicious.

Kitchen Corner said...

This is a delicious yet healthy version of banana cake. I really like to try it. Thanks for sharing!

CY said...

When I opened your blog and saw your photo of the banana bread, I almost fell of my chair becuz I had just made one and it was baking in the oven! :) I didn't put bananas on top (overkill for non-banana lover like me) and the use of wholemeal flour does sound alot healthier! Great job!


Elin Chia said...

I juz baked one last weekend :) and yours definitely a healthy one. Will add to my To-Do list :) thanks for sharing.

ah Teo said...

hi HHB, u could try replacing part of the wholemeal flour with oatmeal as it will make the texture coarser and chewier. i made mine the last time and it turned out fine. Hope that helps! http://notafreakingfoodconnoisseur.blogspot.com/2008/11/banana-loaf-with-white-chocolate-chips.html

VSP said...

hi there HHB,

I love your blog.... its really interesting..... im planning on making the banana cake...but was wondering.... can i replace the 90gm's of wholemeal flour with 90gm's plain flour...thus only using 180gm's of plain flour.Would the baking powder and baking soda measurements change as well?

Tq :)

Anonymous said...

Hello. Just found this article about eating healthy
and Resturants. Great tips on how to stay thin and
healthy even tho you want to eat out more.
Hope this helps anyone who eats out alot.


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Let's masak, you should try baking with wholemeal flour...I really like them in cakes :)

Hi Jackie, hope you will like this cake too!

Ida, Grace, thanks!

Hi CY, I am not surprised! After baking this loaf, I saw a somewhat similar recipe in the Straits Times :)

Hi Elinluv, I hope you will like this version too :)

Thanks Ah Teo for the tips!!

Hi Shamili, you can replace the wholemeal with plain flour...you don't have to make any changes to the baking powder and baking soda. I look forward to reading about your cake :)

Hi Weight Loss, thanks for link!

Anonymous said...

Oh this looks great! I love the use of wholemeal flour definitely makes it much healthier. After my recent whole wheat fettuccine, I've decided to give wholemeal flour a try as well in my baking. A healthier alternative for my highly expanding waistline! :P

Thanks for sharing this, HHB :)

Anonymous said...


When I bake in loaf pan, the surface of the cake always 'explode' and crack. Look at yours, the surfsce is perfect. I wonder how you do it....can you give me some advices?

Thank you.

Anonymous said...


Just want to let you know that I am so glad to have found your blog. Being far from Singapore and missing our Asian style bread, it was great to stumble on your blog entry for the milk bread loaf. I've baked it 3 times over the last 10 days and it has turned out wonderful each time. My family and I thank you for curing some of our homesickness!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Let's masak, I am not sure what's the reason, but I think it could be the recipe...my pound cakes usually crack and explode in the middle too :)

Hi Anonymous, I am glad to hear that you had great success with the milk loaf and cured your homesickness :D

Amy V. said...

Hi Hi. I just discovered your blog the other day. Love it and the little community you have built here. Thought I'd pass on an award to you. Do with it as you see fit. ;)

Anonymous said...

Such a great recipe! I've highlighted it on my blog as one of my favourite recipes of the week.


Anonymous said...

Compared to a cake bought in a store with lots of additives this one is much healthier. It looks so delicious too. I'm going to try baking one with my son at the weekend. Thanks for sharing.


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Avlor, thanks so much for the award! I feel so honoured!

Hi Nats, thanks for highlighting this on your blog :)

Hi ksm150ps, I hope you and your son have a fun time baking!

Anonymous said...

Hi HHB, I followed your recipe and baked this cake, it turned out to be very good, well, minus the guilty feeling of eating cakes! I wonder whether the plain flour can even be replaced with full wholemeal flour? Haha. Hey, well done HHB, appreciate your good recipe. THANK YOU!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Daphne, if you were to replace the plain flour with wholemeal flour, you will have to adjust the amount of liquid...otherwise the cake will be very dense and hard?? My advise is to stick to the recipe's ingredient amount...in fact, it is best to follow all baking recipes as closely as possible. Hope this helps :)

Anonymous said...

I made the cake last weekend,it turnouts to be very nice.The cake smells so good(not too sure bec I use the pisang berangan,or bec the cinnamon topping).My DH give a thumbs up for this cake.

Thanks so much for the recipe. Is this a Taiwanese recipe book?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Sem, glad to hear that your DH likes this cake :) The author of this book is from Hong Kong.

Michele said...

Hi HBB, I baked this cake and its really one of the best banana cakes I've tried, minus all the fat and sugar. My kids had 3-4 helpings each :) Thanks!

Anonymous said...

hi hhb!

greetings frm tokyo! me a singaporean SAHM living in tokyo loves ur blog!
i just tried this recipe and love it so much! thanks!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, this is my favourite recipe too :D
I am glad you like it!

Kenny. said...

Hi, will the cake work out if i use a smaller pan and reduce the ingredients according to the %?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Kenny, I am not too sue about reducing the portion...maybe you can use a smaller pan size and bake the left over batter in muffin cups?

Yummy Bakes said...

Hi, I tried this cake yesterday. The cake is very soft and moist. Is this cake meant to be not so sweet. Despite using very ripe bananas, I still find not sweet enough ... this is the first time I am baking with wholemeal flour.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Yummy Bakes, the sweetness mainly from the banana...but since I dont have a sweet tooth, I find the sweetness just right.

4platy said...


I just tried your receipe! It turned out excellent, not too sweet indeed.
It was just a little burnt at the top at about 40mins, delicious. Thank you for sharing. My first cake in at least 5 years? I bought a cake pan just for this.