A few years ago my sister and I went to Sandal’s Royal Bahamian Resort. I know, it’s weird that a brother and sister went to typically a couples only resort but it wasn’t. My sister was working as a travel agent at the time and through some really awesome company perks got a trip for two for free. I had just graduated from university with a BA and so with a very generous act of sibling love my sister offered to take me as a graduation gift. I was thrilled as I had never been to the Bahama’s, or anywhere in the Caribbean for that matter, and loved the prospect of being a pirate for a few days. And a pirate I was. I’d find myself asking fairly regularly. “Why is the rum always gone?” and I may or may not have taken some of the beer from our room home with me. One of things that you quickly discover while at a Sandal's resort is how much better the food and drinks are than at other all inclusive resorts. We ate, drank and were merry for the 4 days we were there. This recipe, Drunken Lime Banana Bread, was inspired by my time in the Bahama’s.
One of the things I absolutely loved about our trip was the room that we stayed in. Jessica, had booked a standard room because that was what was allowed through her company. Nothing special, but for the two of us who were in dire need of a vacation, it was wonderful. However, once we arrived and the resort found out that she was a travel agent, they told us to leave our luggage with them, go and experience the resort while they prepared our room. After our early morning flight, we were both eager to oblige. We grabbed our bathing suits and took off to the nearest pool to relax for a few hours.
When it was time for us to go to our rooms we went to the front desk where they proceeded to give us a tour of the resort. We assumed this was because Jessica was a travel agent and they wanted her to know what the resort had to offer her future clients. We also assumed that our room was in the second tower of the resort because that was where our room was booked. So as they led us around the resort we couldn’t have known orexpected what was coming next. They led us through some of the first towers rooms and the private villa’s, which we had to go through to get to the second tower. All of them were very nice! However, half way through the private villa’s they stopped at one so we could take a look through. As we were headed to leave to continue the tour they handed us the room keys and said enjoy your stay! At which point our jaws dropped and freaked out a little. There was a lounge area, private bar which was fully stocked, and a king size bed, which we had to share, but was no problem because it was a KING SIZED BED! The washroom was incredible and the best part was our front porch that led to a private hot tub and swimming pool. Jessica and I couldn’t believe it! We had an incredible room for what would be an incredible trip.
We had a lot of fun on the resort property with 9 restaurants, a private island, and 2 large pools, there was always something to do… and eat! But my favourite day was spent in downtown Nassau. It was full of tourist traps but I didn’t mind. There was the pirate museum, the Grass Market, The Queen’s Staircase that leads to Fort Fincastle, and a ton of restaurants serving up their own Conch Fritters. It was nice to stroll through downtown Nassau learning about it culture and troubled history. The activity that I enjoyed most was the pirate museum, and I know, I know, it was the biggest tourist trap there! I personally loved reading about the pirate captains that made this area so infamous. Oh and I got to climb on a replica pirate ship which I may or may not have been allowed to do. (See I was a pirate!) It was awesome!
But the thing I enjoyed most about this trip was our snorkelling excursion. Since I was a kid I’ve always been fascinated by the ocean and the animals that call it home. I’ve snorkelled other parts of the world, which were amazing in there own right, but those experiences are unmatched compared to this one. They took us to a wreck just off the coast of Nassau. It was amazing to see, first hand, how the sea had created a beautiful corral reef, out of what was, I can only imagine, a ugly man made vessel. What really made this special for me was seeing a nurse shark resting on the ocean floor in it’s natural habitat.
Sure there are excursions you can go on to see sharks, but those are attracted by bait or kept in pens. This was authentic. The shark was as long as I am tall. (5’ 10”) I honestly couldn’t believe my eyes! I fumbled with my underwater camera but was luckily enough to snap a couple shots of it before it took off. Growing up, I had always wanted to see a real shark in its natural habitat and I got to on this trip! Cross that one of the Bucket list!
This Drunken Lime Banana Bread was inspired by my trip to the Bahama’s and I think it’ll leave you asking, as did the rum for me, “Why is the Banana Bread always gone?”
Drunken Lime Banana Bread
3 Ripe Banana’s
1/3 Cup Coconut Oil
1 oz. Spiced Rum
1 Egg Beaten
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 1/4 Teaspoons Baking Soda
1 3/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
Zest of one medium sized Lime.
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease bread pan and set aside. In a medium sized mixing bowl mix together all the dry ingredients. (Flour, Baking Soda, Sugar and Salt) In a separate mixing bowl mash up the ripe banana’s with a fork and mix in the coconut oil, egg, spiced rum and lime zest together until well combined. Pour the wet ingredients on top of the dry ingredients and begin to fold together with a spatula. Be careful not to over stir. Once all the dry ingredients are wetted pour batter into the greased bread pan and place in the oven. Bake for 50 minutes or until the bread is cooked through.