Life, Sheep And Chocolate Banana Bread


I don’t know about you but I can barely cope with the news at the moment.  Endless stories of horrific family violence, murders and assaults make me wonder where the world is actually heading.  Thinking about the boys trapped in the caves in Thailand gives me an instant feeling of claustrophobia and anxiety; I can only imagine how their families must be feeling.  Not to mention the brave rescue worker who has lost his life.

I know I cannot completely ignore the outside world but there are times when it all just seems too horrendous.  I feel lucky that when I do switch off the radio the simple pleasures in life are grounding and reassuring, even when life gets messy and tiring.

Just moments before the sun sets and with a little dust in the air, the peace and light in our sheep yards creates a perfect place for sneaking up on unsuspecting sheep.  These ewes are bravely raising their lambs in difficult, dry conditions and I constantly admire their resilience.

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Tiny sprouts of broccoli are just starting to appear in my vegetable garden.  I always think the first broccoli for the season feels a bit like the first tomato for the season.  It deserves a little celebration.


Fresh lamb, expertly butchered by The Shady Farmer.  I love that he knew I was going to take a photo, even before I had mentioned it.

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Thank goodness there is always baking.  I know that every multi national café in the world serves various interpretations of banana bread and there are countless recipes on the interwebs. But, a lovely friend who once owned a local café gave me this particular recipe (below) and it never fails.  It also makes the kitchen smell like warm chocolate, I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

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For us, the school holidays have just started which means a break in the weekday routine and hopefully more time for paddock fires, bread and soup making and quieter days.

I will be watching out for this book all about bread and butter with interest.

I have been thinking about this book  too, featuring recipes, stories, photography and art by women from sixteen different cultural backgrounds.

How about you?

Watching the news?

Or escaping from it when you can through your home life and cakes?

Happy Sunday, friends x

Dark Chocolate Banana Bread
  • 125 g neutral tasting oil such as grapeseed
  • 250 g castor sugar
  • 4 bananas mashed (or 300g)
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 175 g good quality dark cooking chocolate chopped
  • 250 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a large loaf tin with baking paper. 

  2. In a large bowl combine oil, sugar, banana, eggs, vanilla and chocolate. Mix well.

  3. Sift flour and baking powder into the wet ingredients. Combine gently, do not ove rmix.

  4. Pour mixture into prepared loaf tin and cook for 1 hour or until a testing skewer comes out clean.  Remove from the tin and allow to cool on a wire cooling rack. 


  1. Reply


    July 8, 2018

    To busy working to create evil in the world……. Yes it is all too sad so I switch off also…….
    Need to kill a sheep to…… Would love a leg of lamb now….. Enjoy the hols……

    • Reply

      Jane S

      July 21, 2018

      Thanks Chooky, I hope a break is in sight for you.

  2. Reply

    Kate B

    July 8, 2018

    I switch off, as much as I can…
    Banana bread is one of my favourites and I had an excellent recipe which has been sadly lost in the depths of my kitchen. I will have to give this one a go. Happy holidays xxx

    • Reply

      Jane S

      July 21, 2018

      Thanks Kate, oh the things that can be found in the depths of the kitchen! x

  3. Reply


    July 8, 2018

    Moi aussi, je souffre des nouvelles que j’entends partout dans le monde, mais je crois qu’il faut que nous soyons heureux, que nous aimions tous ces petits instants en ayant vraiment l’intention que les autres aussi puissent les apprécier car c’est le seul moyen que nous ayons à notre portée pour aider à améliorer tout cela. c’est ce que vous faites avec votre blog: faire partager vos moments de petits bonheusr avec les autres, et pour cela, Merci!

  4. Reply


    July 9, 2018

    I listen to the news first thing every morning and sometimes wonder how the world has got into the state that it has but then there’s a snippet of good news or I hear about or witness an act of kindness and remember that most of the world’s population are good people.
    Currently escaping from cooking (though tempted by your banana bread recipe) as it is so hot here (hot UK not hot Broken Hill!) and certainly no campfires as everywhere is tinder dry.
    Enjoy your school holiday break from routine. A x

    • Reply

      Jane S

      July 21, 2018

      Thank you Anne, the world is indeed full of good people x

  5. Reply


    July 12, 2018

    Hi Jane, your sheep have such lovely faces! I know what you mean about the news. It can all seem so overwhelming. I think it’s important to be informed but we do need to refocus on the simple and deeply good things in life to keep sane, otherwise we’d think that the world had gone to hell in a handcart. We’ve all been holding our breath here for England in the World Cup – a uniting thing in a divided country – but, sadly, it wasn’t to be. The team did brilliantly, though, and has restored a little dignity to the UK! Your banana bread sounds and looks delicious; I’ll definitely try this recipe, thank you. Sam x

    • Reply

      Jane S

      July 21, 2018

      Thank you Sam, it is always so lovely to hear from you. Jane x


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