Cranberry and banana loaf with ginger and walnuts(eggless)

by Sunita on February 22, 2010

The nose is blocked, the voice hoarse, the forehead’s hot, sneezes galore- the story of my life for the last couple of days. It was the kids’ half term break last week and their mum wasn’t feeling very well. What a shame! Not the very best of situations. I tried to somehow manage the day and towards the end of the day, couldn’t resist slipping under the duvet. Voices, which were quite loud earlier, were now a whisper, ”Are you okay, mum”? Voices riddled with concern? Oh! How I hate such days. Well, in a way, it is probably not too bad to be fussed over once in  a while, but this is definitely not the perfect situation I can imagine myself to be fussed over, in, and of course, it does ruin all those plans- plans of  getting so many things done, plans of enjoying the break with the kids. It casts such a gloom over the house hold. But then, it can’t be helped. Thankfully,I am feeling so much better today and it is nice to be back to the routine and also to the oven. A  ripe banana and some pureed dried cranberries were used to make this sticky, moist cranberry and banana loaf with ginger and walnuts.

The walnuts added the bite and the ginger the spiciness. I have used jaggery to sweeten the loaf.

Jaggery or “gur”( pronounced ‘goor’) as it is called in Assam, is  a traditional unrefined non-centrifugal sugar consumed in Asia, Africa and South America. It is made for direct consumption. This type of sugar is a concentrated product of cane juice without separation of the molasses and crystals. They usually come in lumps or moulded shapes and can easily be found at the Indian grocers, or even in the Asian aisle of supermarkets. Jaggery ranges from mustard yellow to deep amber in colour depending on the quality of the sugar cane juice. It is sticky but an be crumbled easily. It is made up of big lumps which melt to form a thick gooey paste. Jaggery has a heavy caramel like aroma which is slightly alcoholic like sweet sherry or port. The taste is very sweet and musky. Jaggery is a rich source of iron due to the process involved, using iron utensils. It is considered by some to be a particularly wholesome sugar and, unlike refined sugar, it retains more mineral salts. Moreover, the process does not involve chemical agents.To store make sure that the container is dry or the jaggery will go mouldy. Use within 6 months. Read more about jaggery here . Regarding substitutes for jaggery, check out this link Now, lets get back to the recipe for the cranberry and banana loaf with ginger and walnuts-

What’s needed-

1 small banana, pureed ( I got about 4 tblsps of puree) 1 and 1/2 C of dried cranberries, soaked in 3/4 C of hot water till they soften, and pureed 5 tblsp of sunflower/vegetable oil 1 C of milk 50 gms of jaggery, grated 2 C of whole wheat flour (atta) 1 and 1/2 tsp baking powder 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda 1 and 4 tblsp of chopped crystallised ginger 3 tblsp of chopped walnuts How to-

  1. Pre heat the oven at 180 deg C and line a 7 and 1/2 inch by 3 and 1/2 inch loaf pan with foil.
  2. In a bowl, add the banana and cranberry purees, jaggery, oil and milk. Stir well and keep aside.
  3. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, soda, ginger and walnuts and mix well.
  4. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture. Stir the fruit mixture well, the jaggery will have almost dissolved by now, if not, stir briskly fora little more and tip the whole mixture into the flour mixture.
  5. Fold in till everything is just moistened. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan.
  6. Place the pan in the centre of the pre heated oven and bake for about 50 minutes or till the top is golden and a toothpick inserted through the centre of the loaf comes out clean.
  7. Cool the loaf in the pan for 10-15 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool completely before slicing.
  8. Store in air tight containers. Enjoy the slices on their own or with some butter spread on it.

The loaf is full of fruit and nut goodness and can form a great addition to the breakfast table. Me and Dinesh had the slices on their own, while Rengoni and Agastya enjoyed theirs with some butter.

I think it tastes better the next day. I made it at night and served it for breakfast in the morning. This was stickily good!


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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Happy Cook February 22, 2010 at 2:26 pm

I would love a piece especially as there is ginger indside.
Yeah i know the feeling, I have been having a coughing like a mad dog for a whole month, went twice to the GP still not healed, have to go back tommorow again.


2 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 1:00 pm

Hope you feel better F. As for the loaf, do help yourself :-D


3 Sayantani February 22, 2010 at 3:03 pm

Hope you are feeling better by now Sunita. take good care. the loaf looks really lovely…would love to have with evening cuppa.


4 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 1:00 pm

Thanks Sayantani; and yes, am feeling better now.


5 Rosa February 22, 2010 at 3:55 pm

This loaf is so moist and airy! It looks delicious!




6 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 1:01 pm

Thank you Rosa, yes, it is very good :-)


7 Sarah, Maison Cupcake February 22, 2010 at 3:57 pm

Sorry you’ve not been well last week, I’d been wondering where you were. This loaf looks very tempting, especially the slices with butter!


8 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Yes, was under the weather and it was not the perfect timing with the kids at home for their half term break. Thankfully, am so much better now. Give the loaf a try, we loved it :-)


9 Sharmilee February 22, 2010 at 4:23 pm

The bread loaf looks soft , banana and nuts yum combo!


10 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:58 pm

Thanks Sharmilee :-)


11 Nilufer February 22, 2010 at 4:47 pm

would luv to try this..can i substitute the jaggery with sugar?if so,how much??n what other fruit can i use instead of cranberry?i dont knw whr i can it here…


12 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:58 pm

Nilufer, check the link in my post on substitutes, that should help.
As for the cranberries, you could probably try with other dried fruits, although the taste will differ. But should still be good.


13 Jyoti February 22, 2010 at 5:00 pm

Thats lovely.. I am glad its eggles.. have to try it.. Get well soon..


14 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:54 pm

Thanks jyothi, do give it a try :-)


15 Swathi February 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm


I loved your jaggery version of cranberry banana loaf, i need to try with jagerry in baking. I will try as your loaf looks good.


16 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:54 pm

Thanks Swathi, glad you liked it, do give it a try :-)


17 Asha@FSK February 22, 2010 at 7:29 pm

Oh no! sorry to hear you caught the flu… hope you recover very very soonly!


18 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Thanks for the wishes asha, I’m so much better now :-)


19 Soma February 22, 2010 at 8:54 pm

I am going to use these things together. What a gorgeous one! all of my favorite things in here. I hope you feel better dear Sunita. not a fun time to be sick with the children at home.


20 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:53 pm

I am better now, Soma, thanks. But, yes, it wqs not the best time to be ill.

as for the loaf, do give a try and i hope you like it as much as we did :-)


21 Miri February 23, 2010 at 8:17 am

I used to think the same about gur too – till I entered the sugar industry two years back. There are chemicals used in the gur process (locally called “masala”) to clean it of the dirt and other impurities which get into it. Quite a lot of the gur which is made is produced a small cottage industry situation – by cane farmers, right next to the fields….and in unhygienic conditions. While the gur available abroad may be produced in line with some specific standards, it also means that it no longer has that amount of mineral and iron content since it would be more refined.

Nevertheless, I still use gur for all the traditional Indian sweets – this loaf looks like it would make a great tea time snack for my 4 year old and me! Thanks!


22 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:52 pm

Glad you like the recipe Miri. As for the gur, hmm, that is definitely an eye opener; thanks.


23 The Cooking Ninja February 23, 2010 at 11:03 am

ooh…I got to check out the Asian store for it. Never noticed it. That looks fantastic. I love banana. Does it gives out an Assam flavour? Just wondering. Assam is delicious in soup. I totally agree that some cakes like carrot cakes n some others taste better the next day or the day after. :)


24 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Thabks Pam, do check it out; not sure about the Assam flavour though :-)


25 The Gypsy Chef February 23, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Sick over the kid’s holiday……I’ve been there. Nothing to do for it but rest. Glad your feeling better. They will appreciate their Mom more now!
That banana loaf looks wonderful!


26 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Yes, not the perfect time, is it?
Glad you like the loaf, Pam, thanks :-)


27 Renee February 23, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Just found your blog this morning as it popped up in my Google Reader. This is perfect–just the kind of dessert I need for a team get together at work!


28 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:48 pm

Thanks Renee, do give it a try; we loved it :-)


29 CurryLeaf February 23, 2010 at 6:38 pm

The combo is heavenly.You are truly creative Sunita.Take Care


30 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:47 pm

Thank you :-)


31 diva February 23, 2010 at 8:13 pm

I seriously needa come round to eat your food at some point. You always get the flavours right and you come up with the most exciting combinations that work. Either that or you just know what flavours tease my tastebuds right – ginger, cranberry, cardamom, cinnamon – u use em all! (esp in those fudge sweets you gave me!) x


32 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:47 pm

LOL, thanks sweetie, and you are most welcome to come to ours :-)


33 Nirmala February 24, 2010 at 5:24 am

Oh Sunita, I too had a day down yesterday. I was not well and the kids were around me and talking in whispers and worried voice. I could understand what u say. But this loaf looks like a treat and compensation for one-day-down ;)


34 Sunita February 24, 2010 at 12:46 pm

It definitely is nirmala, do give it a try. Hope you are feeling better now :-)


35 Sunila February 24, 2010 at 10:18 pm

Hello Sunita,

I tried this recipe and it does taste very good. However, the bread did not come out fluffy. It looks/feels sticky; definitely not like bread(but more like a brownie). Wondering what I might have done wrong. I thought I followed your recipe exactly and had all the ingredients. Any thoughts? btw, I should mention this was my first time baking from scratch :) I used the regular whole wheat roti atta.


36 Sunita February 25, 2010 at 7:13 am

Hi Sunila, this bread is not a fluffy one and is definitely sticky, as I’ve mentioned in the post. Not all quickbreads will have the same texture. And yes, I’ve used the same flour as you. So, don’t worry, you’ve got it right on your first tryst with baking :-)


37 Jeanne @ Cooksister! March 15, 2010 at 4:09 pm

Oh, so many wonderful flavours in one loaf! I love it – looks really moist and sticky too which is a bonus. A bread-cake hybrid! Thanks fo sharing.


38 Purnima June 17, 2010 at 5:21 pm

Sunita..hi..the facelift sure makes u feel good, but trust me, as a reader, u always come up with versatile healthy bakes, super delicious snaps n lovely writeup…which makes me feel more than good!
Came to this post I hv first time got my hands on a packet of dried cranberries(Ocean spray brand) wd seek your advise on whether to use it for cookies or they would taste better in a cake? (I hv two kids aged 5.7 n 4.5 = fussssss ;) , hence to please their tastebuds as well evading the thought of cranberries being spat frm the cookies …wd you pls help me wt ur advise? Thanks!


39 Purnima June 20, 2010 at 3:33 pm

Sunita..its me again.. I baked cookies (Oatmeal-Crasins -chocochips-the fussiest one not only loved the cranberry flavor, he picked on them – this time to relish, had 5 cookies at one thought wd feedback u that my first time trial wt cranberry worked out great.) Thanks again to you for lovely photographs, n trust me, I bought these cranberries on first sight as I was sure u hv couple of no-fail recipes with them :D Hv a lovely week.


40 Sunita June 20, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Purnima, sorry for being late in getting back to you; but am so glad you tried the cookies and your li’l one picked on them , in the good way, of course ;-)


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