Tag Archives: banana bread

Banana bread with yogurt and chocolate chips

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Right before Eid I made two banana breads for the office: one with butter, lemon and yogurt, and this one with yogurt and chocolate chips. Both were assembled based on the bananas and yogurt I had to use up, and both were very nice! The chocolate chips were courtesy of my American flatmate, and much appreciated: otherwise coconut chips or nuts would have been nice too.  Though I am not a banana fan, they come my way (canteen desserts, office coffees) and are good and plentiful here, and they do freeze well unpeeled. As our next chest freezer is already full (mainly due to ant invasions), I thought banana breads were a better destination for these.

Banana bread with yogurt and chocolate chips

2-3 small very ripe bananas, mashed (I used about 145 gr peeled)
150 grammes plain yogurt (here there is only full-fat local yogurt, but very good)
2 medium eggs
50 ml vegetable oil
250 grammes all-purpose flour  (until I thought the batter had right consistency)
125 grammes sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
a restrained handful of chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a medium loaf pan with parchment paper (mine is maybe 20x5cm). Whisk together eggs, bananas and oil. Whisk in the rest, and stir in a handful of dark chocolate chips or chopped baking chocolate. Bake at 180C for 50-55 minutes or so. I test with a wooden chopstick, this one took a bit longer than the lemon cake. This would probably be faster if not baking two cakes at same time. Cool on a rack for a bit before serving (easier to slice next day).

Here are the two banana breads, lemon and chocolate chip, freshly baked. Watched with an episode of Alias season 1, which is still enjoyable!  We have not paid for DSTV here, but not having actual TV is fine as long as you have hard drives and DVDs. I am really really forward to seeing Jennifer Garner in Peppermint. Most movies I watch on planes these days, though we did go see Deadpool 2 recently at Accra Mall, which has a very good cinema. DP2 was gory but very funny.

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New shorts, and banana bread with a lemon twist

shorts from woodin material

One thing to enjoy in Accra is the wonderful fabric: lots of colours! I had another trip to the tailor this week: going to Woodin on Oxford Street a few weeks ago for fabric, then debating what to make. My wardrobe is becoming increasingly colorful, as my Europe-bought clothes are washed to death after 2.5 years here and fading, and thus being replaced with brighter clothes in Ghanaian fabrics.  Our tailor uses Pinterest and is very good at working with the shape you are. We debated styles and patterns: this time, it was three pairs of long shorts for my husband, and a cold shoulder dress for me. They all look great!

Another thing that is plentiful here is bananas….. B-A-N-A-N-A-S….. ! Small and sweet, I just wish I actually liked bananas. Which I do not. However, if they are hidden in a smoothie or a cake, it is manageable, and I do like to bake. This is a simple banana bread made for the office today. Tomorrow is Eid al Fitr, and a public holiday in Ghana, so I made two banana breads to take to work: one with lemon, one with chocolate chips. Here is the lemon one. Eid Mubarak!

Banana bread with yogurt and a lemon twist

110 gr butter, softened at room temperature  (softens fast at 30C)
125 grammes white sugar
2 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla sugar
4 tbsp lemon juice (mine was bottled)
3-4 small ripe bananas (150 gr)
1/4 tsp salt
100 grammes yogurt
220 gr flour
1 tsp. baking soda

To glaze after baking:
2 tbs white sugar
1 tbs lemon juice

Heat the oven to 180C. Line a loaf tin with parchment paper. Whisk eggs, butter, sugar and mashed bananas. Add the rest and whisk briefly.  Pour into loaf tin, bake on middle rack for 50 minutes or so, until a test chopstick comes out clean. This batter rose a fair bit. Take it out the loaf tin and cool on a rack. While cake is still cooling, baste the top with lemon juice and sugar. Enjoy!

Note: I had extra batter so baked that in a greased ramekin, for an early cake taste.   Next time I might poke more holes in the cake, like for a lemon drizzle, and use more lemon juice.

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The two banana breads went fast! We did hiring interviews recently, and one question to candidates was on team work and what they would contribute to a team’s success. I am not sure cake would have been the right answer, but must say cakes do contribute to office goodwill.  😉

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Banana bread with butterscotch, take two

20170318_115621.jpgAfter a week of visitors, it is a quiet Saturday with just us here. I do get some friends and colleagues travelling through Accra, so it’s been a sociable week. We went to Kakum National Park and Cape Coast Castle (more on that later),  we’ve been out to dinner and and it was great. Nice today though, to catch up at home: wake up early but get up late, fold laundry and tidy up, take stock of the fridge. As usual, there were blackening bananas in the fridge, along with 4-5 pineapples, so I made granola with banana, and banana bread.

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We may just have avocados on crisp bread (and banana bread…) for an early dinner, as we are going to the theatre tonight. A friend has kindly invited us to “The Prince of Egypt” at the National Theatre, with students from the Ghana International School. Should be interesting.  I’ve never been inside there.

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Banana bread with butterscotch chips

4 small very ripe bananas, peeled and mashed  (about 230 grammes peeled weight)
2 small eggs
60 grammes sunflower oil
60 grammes thick plain yoghurt
25 grammes brown sugar
200 grammes all-purpose wheat flour
60 grammes wholewheat flour
25 grammes large oatmeal flakes
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Optional: 60 grammes butterscotch chips

Mash bananas with a fork, then whisk in eggs, sunflower oil, and yoghurt. Whisk in the rest (I did this all with a fork, too sweaty to dig out mixer) until flour is mixed through. I was making granola, so I threw in the last handful of oatmeal here.  I also used some of my precious butterscotch chips bought in Ithaca last summer:  some in the middle of the cake, some strewn on top. I used a parchment lined loaf tin. Bake at 190C for 30-40 minutes, until a testing stick comes out clean and top is golden.

Notes: This was in for about 40 minutes but with the tray of baking granola over it in oven part of the time, it is probably faster if alone in oven. Not much sugar as the bananas here are really sweet, as are the butterscotch chips.  I was thinking of a peanut-butter espresso banana bread, but went for butterscotch again.

Here are some more Ghana@60 images: decorations on a fence, and commemorative free doughnuts delivered by Uber. Yes, we have Uber in Accra! Makes it so much easier to get around town and not have to haggle about fares. There are still Ghana flags all over town, and banners and decorations on red, yellow and green.

Another enjoyable point of the week: we got our one and only Christmas card sent to Accra! Mailed in mid-November, it finally reached us. Our office has a PO box, as there is no street mail delivery, and even then, some things do not arrive. Apparently Ghana and Italy were the two countries where my friend mailed Christmas cards, and they all arrived after 2-4 months.  We just tell family to send mail to our Rome address and someone will scan it for us. It was thus unexpected and very nice to get an actual card.

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