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You know, I’ve never really been an avid follower of recipe magazines. There’s something about working within the constraints of someone else’s taste that seems less fun than experimenting and coming up with your own creations. So even if it’s just by adding a couple of extra ingredients, or substituting one spice for another, I’ll usually end up tweaking a recipe in the process of making the dish.

That being said, I find recipes useful, as a point to jump off from. Which is why it doesn’t really bother me whether it’s the Tetsuya cookbook, Gourmet Traveller, or magazines like recipes+ or Woman’s Day where I find my inspiration.

Regular readers may know that I’ve recently become the proud owner of a mortgage, so rushing out and spending $50 a pop on cookbooks is much less of an option. So I was intrigued when Magshop said they’d like me to review a food magazine.

For those of you who haven’t heard of Magshop, it’s an online magazine shop, where you can subscribe to magazines and have them delivered to you in the mail. It’s cheaper than buying the magazine at the newsagent, and the magazine comes to you, as soon as it’s released. That’s a plus if you’re kind of lazy like me and it’s always good to get mail other than bills, right? It’s also a good gift idea if you forget to buy someone a present; “Um, I got this subscription for you, but you may not get the first one for a week or two.” Yeah, of course I remembered your birthday.

recipes plus magazine
To be honest, I was surprised when my first copy of recipes+ came in the mail. I had expected relatively boring dishes that I would never be interested in, but I guess I underestimated how much the average person knows about food these days. I guess shows like Masterchef really has changed the cooking landscape in Australia.

recipe magazine Australia
The range of recipes in the magazine was actually pretty interesting, ranging from a pasta with chicken and figs, to chicken biryani, chicken pho (I’m still dubious about that one) and fattoush. And I’ll be honest, when it comes to baking, that’s the one time I will actually follow instructions! Since I had some over-ripe bananas in the fruit bowl, I thought I’d give this pecan banana loaf a shot. The recipe promised I could just beat it in the one bowl, so how hard could it be, right?

Tip: if you’re mixing a bread/cake batter in a bowl, make sure it’s a big bowl. It also helps if you’re using a proper beater with speed settings, instead of a whisk attachment that came with your stab blender which has only one speed setting: fast. Much splatter and cursing later, I had myself, and in a matter of only minutes, I was pretty much done! I put it in the oven, and kicked back on the couch.

banana loaf recipe

Fifty minutes later, and time to see if the recipe was a WIN or a FAIL.
banana loaf recipe banana loaf recipe
It actually came out pretty much perfect! Maybe it rose a little too much in the centre. I’m being picky now. But it was yummy, and wonderfully moist. So the recipes+ banana loaf was a WIN! I didn’t bother with the frosting, because it was already sweet enough for me. Anyway, if the other recipes work this well, I think I might need to get me a subscription. Though to be honest, most of the recipes tend to be for four serves, which doesn’t quite suit my bachelor lifestyle!

Unless you’re an avid racing pigeon enthusiast (they don’t stock the Australian Racing Pigeon Journal) you can probably subscribe to your favourite magazine at They stock the most popular women’s interest and men’s lifestyle magazines, like the Australian Women’s Weekly, Top Gear, FHM, Money Magazine and Australian Geographic.

Sponsored by Nuffnang.

3 Replies to “recipes+”

  1. Banana cakes/loafs are one of my favourites. I'll help you eat some of the cake so it doesn't go to waste 🙂

  2. I'm about half way through it, four days in – I've been eating it for breakfast! – and it's still moist!

    I was a little perplexed with the fact there's self-raising flour and bi-carb in the recipe. Usually it's self-raising or bi-carb? I wonder what the chemical reasoning for that is… maybe it's a preservative effect!

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