Monday, 12 May 2014

Banana Loaf Cake with Chocolate





I've made a banana loaf cake for as long as I can remember flavouring it with orange zest, cinnamon & ginger - a sort of Jamaican theme - but it wasn't until Nigel Slater decided to add chocolate chips to his version that it really became a hit in our house.

This recipe with chocolate has now become our firm favourite and it's a great way to use up those forgotten over ripe bananas that have been left in the fruit bowl.


Recipe

125g Butter - softened
235g Soft Brown Sugar
2 eggs
400g Bananas - peeled weight & ripe
100g Dark Chocolate
250g Plain Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

A lined loaf tin

Preheat oven to 180C/Gas 4

I use a food mixer for this cake it makes the process quick & easy and frankly life's too short to faff around when the outcome is the same whether your make it by hand or a mixer!

First off cream the butter & sugar together until light & fluffy.


(I apologise for my really old mixer I've had it for 25 years! it's such a trooper)

Then add the eggs & vanilla along with 1 tablespoon of flour and beat together. Introduce a little more flour if it looks like it may curdle.


your looking for this consistency.......

Then grab your peeled bananas.....

banananaas - I never know when to stop spelling.............

bananananaa the temptation to keep going is too great!....

anyway, back to the recipe..

Grab your bananas (!), one at a time and holding over a clean bowl squeeze them into a soft pulp. I find this is better than mashing them up with a fork because it leaves you with more irregular size lumps & gives a great texture to the loaf . Also as an added bonus it helps to moisturise your hands.


when you've finished squidging it should look like this

Clean your hands off, get a large board & chop up the chocolate into chunks - about the size of small lumps of gravel - I finds a herb chopper or a cleaver is excellent for this task.


Chocolate chunks (just in case you didn't guess!)

Now add the Chocolate, bananas, flour & baking powder and fold into your butter mix.


Pour into you lined loaf tin & pop into the oven


Bake for about  50 minutes and then check with a skewer - if the skewer comes out clean its done. Its difficult to give exact cooking times on this cake I've had some take exactly 50 mins and others a lot longer - I think it must depend on the moisture levels in the bananas, all can suggest is to keep checking the loaf after the 50 mins is up.

Once cooked leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so then loosen the paper lining and leave to cool on a wire rack.


You should leave it to cool completely before cutting but we find it hard to resist and often have a warm slice served with a dollop of clotted cream or vanilla ice-cream - Yummy!!


Printable Recipe

 Banana Loaf Cake

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Notes on lining a loaf tin

This process used to strike terror into my heart. When ever a recipe called for this to be done I panicked and usually ended up just squashing some paper into the tin & hoping the cake mixture would push it into the corners for me.

Anyway I had this bright idea a few years ago to line the out side first. i.e. cut you parchment to the right size, turn you tin upside down and fold the paper over creasing the corners and folding like you would to gift wrap a present or make hospital corners on a bed. Then lift off the tin, turn your tin over and pop the lining inside - Ta Dah!.... a perfectly lined tin!

Simples! - as those cute little critters say on that advert!