The kids are in and out at the moment, looking through the tins in the kitchen for something to graze on before going out somewhere again. That’s teenagers I suppose, although I do like knowing that there is a cake tin that actually has cake in it, waiting for me to get peckish. Summer holidays are busy times for many so baking time may be short. It is going to be a soggy weekend outside, so how about a quick-to-bake feel-good bread hinting at Caribbean sunshine?

If you are tempted to work in a bakery then there are lots of new jobs listed on our jobs board this week, see below.

Just because something is produced at speed doesn’t mean it can’t be full of fabulous flavours and succulent moist textures. By combining bananas, molasses, lime and vanilla this fast banana and molasses bread is jam-packed with really gorgeous Caribbean flavours.

The secret with any great bake is to use fresh quality ingredients. Baking powder that has been lingering at the back of a cupboard for years is not going to perform well and give a good lift. Fortunately as BakeryBits products are fast-moving they have a high stock turnover you always get fresh products supplied in their optimum state – so you get better bakes.

Vanessa Kimbell runs the Sourdough School, Northampton


Recipe: Fast banana and
molasses bread

Preheat your oven to 180C.

Saving the banana, mix the wet ingredients together. The lime will slightly curdle the milk which will give the loaf a better rise.
Mix together the dry ingredients.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. There is no need to knead but the dough will be thick.

Stir in the banana and transfer to your 2lb tin that has been greased and floured to prevent it from sticking.

Bake for one hour and to avoid burning, after 40 min, cover with foil. Test by inserting a skewer. It should come out clean. It is VERY important to allow this bread to cool in the tin for 20 minutes and then cool completely before turning out onto a rack. Keep in an airtight container when cool.

Makes: one loaf, using a 2lb traditional loaf tin

400g Organic Type “00” flour
65g Desiccated coconut
10g Superfine salt
150g Soft brown sugar
6g Baking powder
110g Whole milk
220g Yogurt
Juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp Molasses
1 tbsp Vanilla extract
2 chopped ripe bananas
Zest of 1 lime

Buy an Oblong Baker with its companions, the 50cm couche and the flipping board and we’ll give you the 500ml Pelia olive oil, sachet Bioreal organic yeast, 1kg Mulino Marino “00” Soffiata and a 400g pouch of the Himalayan super-fine salt FREE!

Simply put all 7 items into your basket and use coupon code AUGCIABATTA and we will do the rest. Valid until the end of August. (If anything is showing as out of stock on the site, don't worry we'll forward the item to you as soon as it comes back into stock (for overseas customers we'll send your order when everything is available).

What's On

The Tiptree World Bread Awards is back for its fourth year to find the nation’s best home and artisan bakers. Pit your baking skills against others to be judged by a host of judges from industry and TV including Great British Bake Off favourites, Luis Troyano, Frances Quinn, Kimberley Wilson and Martha Collison and BBC2’s Victorian Bakers Duncan Glendinning and John Foster.

Give it a go, details on the World Bread Awards website, closing date for entries is Sunday 4 September.

Image courtesy of Tara Fisher ©

Do you have a sourdough question for Vanessa? Send it to us and the best ones will appear in our next postbag edition and receive a dough whisk.

Suggestion Box

Are we missing something? An usual flour, a particular tin, or a special piece of equipment you’d like to see on our shelves? Let us know and if we decide to stock it, you will receive the very first one of the item you suggest.

Don’t forget to take a look at our sale lines.