This banana bread recipe is a great way to use up over-ripe bananas and the more ripe your bananas are the better this bread tastes.

It is a beautiful moist bread that a lot of people enjoyed doing lockdown when there wasn’t a lot to enjoy.

With the heat back in the sun it is lovely to sit outside and have a slice with a cup of tea or coffee. Sometimes I put in a half teaspoon of cinnamon or mixed spice, which works well.

Chopped pecan nuts (about 50g) also add a nice texture to the bread. You could split this mixture into small portions and bake in muffin tins.

These white chocolate and raspberry cupcakes originated in the US and are very easy to make. They are ideal for children learning to cook. Get good-quality chocolate as that really makes the difference. Sometimes I use blueberries. These cupcakes make a great little treat.

Happy cooking,


White chocolate & raspberry cupcakes

Makes 24

White chocolate & raspberry cupcakes. \ Food styling: Janine Kennedy. Photography: Philip Doyle

250g (9oz) butter, softened, plus extra for greasing

250g (9oz) caster sugar

175g (6oz) self-raising flour, sifted

4 eggs, lightly beaten

1 tsp vanilla extract

50g (2oz) plain flour, sifted

175ml (6fl oz) milk

24 fresh raspberries, for decoration

For the white chocolate icing:

400g (14oz) icing sugar

100g (4oz) white chocolate, broken into pieces

Few drops of vanilla extract

Finely grated rind of 1 orange

  • 1 Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/gas mark four). Grease two 12-hole muffin tins or line with 24 paper cases.
  • 2 Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until pale and creamy. Add a little of the self-raising flour, then slowly add the eggs and vanilla extract, mixing well to combine.
  • 3 Slowly add the remaining self-raising flour to the butter and sugar mixture with the plain flour and milk and beat until just smooth.
    Divide the batter between the paper cases and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until well risen and golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to sit for 10 minutes in the tin. Turn the cupcakes out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  • 4 Meanwhile, make the icing. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and mix with one tablespoon of water to make a thick paste. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave in a heatproof bowl or set over a pan of simmering water. Leave to cool a little, then stir in the icing sugar paste, vanilla extract and orange rind, beating with a wooden spoon until smooth.
  • 5 Cover the cooled cupcakes with the white chocolate icing and top each one with a fresh raspberry.
  • 6 To serve, arrange on a plate in a pyramid or wrap in greaseproof paper to take on picnics or in packed lunches.
  • White chocolate & raspberry cupcakes. \ Food styling: Janine Kennedy. Photography: Philip Doyle

    Banana bread

    Makes one 900g (2lb) loaf

    4 very ripe bananas

    225g (8oz) self-raising flour

    200g (7oz) golden caster sugar

    100g (4oz) butter, melted

    2 large eggs

    1 tsp baking powder

  • 1 Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F/gas mark two). Line a 900ml (1½ pint) non-stick loaf tin with non-stick baking paper.
  • 2 Peel the bananas and roughly chop or place in a food processor. Add the self-raising flour, caster sugar, butter, eggs and baking powder. Blitz until evenly combined.
  • 3 Spoon the mixture into the lined loaf tin and bake for 1¼ hours, until risen and firm to the touch. Leave to rest for 15 minutes before turning out of the tin. Cut into slices and serve warm or cold arranged on a plate.