This bread is deliciously moist and deeply flavorful. The cardamom is a complementary addition to the banana, coconut, and dates. I highly recommend toasting this cake and eating it with a generous smear of butter and a pinch of flaky salt. This recipe was adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh’s Banana, Date, and Walnut Loaf. Enjoy!
1/2ctoasted pecans, roughly chopped
7ozMedjool dates, pitted, chopped into 1-2-3/4’’ pieces (28 dates)
4Tbspunsalted butter, plus more for greasing
3/4cunsweetened shredded coconut, toasted
1 1/2c+ 2 Tbsp flour
1large egg, beaten
2ripe bananas, mashed (1 cup)
Additional butter and salt for serving
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
To toast coconut, place in a large, dry skillet over medium-low heat. Stir frequently, making sure the flakes don’t burn—the color should be a light brown and the coconut will be fragrant when its done—3-6 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool.
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the dates, brown sugar, butter, and water. Mix until sugar dissolves and butter melts. Bring liquid to a boil, then immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a shallow bowl. Stir in toasted coconut, and set aside to cool to room temperature.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cardamom, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
Grease a 9x5 loaf pan with butter, then line with parchment—allow the paper to hang a few inches over the edge.
Once the date and coconut mixture has cooled, add the baking soda, egg, banana, and vanilla; mix to combine. Finally, add the sifted flour mixture and stir until just combined—the batter will be thick; do not over-mix.
Pour the batter into the loaf pan, it should reach about 2/3 the way up the sides. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
When the loaf is done, allow it to cool slightly before removing it from the pan and cooling it on a rack.