Tag Archives: banana

Cinnamon cake with caramel and bananas

img_20190324_135541

Two bananas were turning black here, and I had seen this lovely Danish upside-down  banana cake recipe, so clearly it was time for cake.  (Is it ever not time for cake?) However, I had failed to notice that I needed bananas both for the cake base and batter, so this is an effort to salvage the cake with what was on hand. Oil added to save defrosting butter from freezer. The original looks so much nicer! It also has proper caramel. This was not a pretty cake, but moist and quite tasty, and was enjoyed after Sunday lunch.

Cinnamon cake with caramel and bananas

Caramel
120 gr sugar
25 gr butter

2 ripe bananas

Batter:
2 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla sugar
75 gr soft butter
20 g oil
150 ml milk
 (from milk powder…)
50 gr white sugar
125 gr white wheat flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon

To make caramel, melt sugar in a small frying pan (do not stir), then take off heat and add butter. As you can see, I failed to melt the sugar through and bunged it in the parchment-lined cake tin in the hope that it would even out while baking. It did not. Next time I would just layer brown sugar and butter in cake tin.

Whisk eggs, milk, butter, oil. Add dry ingredients.

Peel bananas and slice lengthwise. Place banana slices in parchment-lined cake tin, then pour over caramel. Then pour over batter. Bake at 180C for 40 minutes. Cool on rack, then invert and serve.

img_20190324_135639

Notes: nice cinnamon flavour and not too much banana taste, which is good as I do not like bananas. The slightly crunchy failed caramel was nice with the cake. Next time, maybe another egg, a little more milk and flour and a smaller tin? This was a 24 cm tin. Some tart creme fraiche on the side would have been good.  We still demolished a respectable amount of it at first sitting.

tro-tro

Tro-tro slogan of the week: ORGANIC. Tro-tros are minibus taxis, often old German or Dutch plumber vans, and they normally have religious slogans on the rear window.  GOD SAVES, INSHALLAH, GOD BLESS, and such. I quite liked this one.

 

Advertisements

Use it up banana bread with chocolate biscotti filling

Accra traffic

Flagstaff House through traffic yesterday: this is the presidential palace in Accra, renamed last year to Jubilee House. February is still a pantry challenge month for me, but I must confess, I am getting very bored of pasta variations and mystery soups from the freezer. Tonight we are watching Bohemian Rhapsody as Oscar countdown, so time for some cake. After defrosting the chest freezer yesterday, I had some frozen bananas, some cream cheese, and some damp chocolate biscotti. Those had I put in the freezer to save them from the ants, but they had become rather damp, though still edible. Hmmmm, maybe a banana cream pie with biscotti base? No, cream is really expensive in Accra, so banana bread it was. Cream cheese survives freezing but was also not improved, so I dolloped that in as well. The crème fraîche was well over best before date, but tasted fine.

I even did a freezer inventory while defrosting: lots of chicken, lots of parmesan and grana  padano, several bags of icy sliced leeks, some pesto and even some crumpets and muffins from Christmas. And Tuscan pâté from last July! This is a shared freezer between three of us, so we corralled each items into different bags, which should help navigate the frozen depths better.

img_20190219_124750

We are following the elections in Nigeria and Senegal this weekend. Ghana has elections late next year, and things are already heating up. NDC is the main opposition party, NPP is currently in power. Elections were  relatively peaceful in 2016, we hope that continues.

It is also still mango season! There is a lady with a fruit stand near our office, normally she makes fruit salad but I get a special mango-only order. Do I want a five, seven or eight cedi mango? (1 USD=5.27 cedi, from 3.8 cedi to the dollar when we arrived.) It is a small luxury, getting my takeway mango these weeks while mangoes are still good.

img_20190222_090752

Use it up banana bread with chocolate biscotti filling

60 gr butter softened
85 gr white sugar
2 medium eggs
240 g mashed bananas  (about 4 small ones), peeled
200 ml crème fraîche  (or 1/2 cup sour cream)
1 cup  plain white wheat flour
1/2 cup wholewheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Filling:
120 gr chocolate biscotti, crumbled
100 gr cream cheese

Cream butter with sugar. Add eggs and whisk, then add mashed bananas and sour cream. Add dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, vanilla sugar and salt.

Pour half the batter in a loaf pan (buttered, with parchment paper in base). Crumble the chocolate biscotti over the batter, then spoon over the cream cheese. Finally, pour over the rest of the batter and smooth it out in loaf pan. Bake in the middle of the oven at 200C for 50 minutes. Test with a wooden cake test stick or chopstick that the cake is baked through (no raw batter if you poke through it). Cool for 15-20 minutes (well, it is 33C here, your kitchen is probably cooler), then turn the loaf out onto a cooking rack. Enjoy with the movie of your choice!

img_20190224_135252

Note: we have very sweet bananas here, so you might need more sugar.

img_20190224_134901

Reunion banana cake with pistachio cream

IMG_20180526_194324.jpg A friend is back in Accra after almost two years, and came for dinner last night. We sat on the balcony with cold beer, chatting and catching up. It was great. It was cool and breezy, as this is one of the two rainy seasons, and windy enough to keep  mosquitos at bay. This was dessert: a cake to use some over-ripe bananas, some leftover yoghurt from Indian takeway, and a reason to use up more crema di pistacchio brought from Rome: imagine a sweet spread like nutella, but with pistachios rather than hazelnuts and cocoa. So no spices, and more cake than banana bread. It was very nice, both with and without pistachio cream.

Friday was also African Union Day, a public holiday here in Ghana. It is the annual commemoration of the foundation of the Organisation of African Unity.  I walked to work, and passed the AU monument where they were setting up for some of the festivities of the day.

img_20180525_071948

Next week I’ll go see our seamstress, to see what she has made: shorts for my husband, dress and skirt for me, all in local fabrics. That should be fun. Now, back to the cake!

Banana cake:
50 grammes butter, softened
125 grammes white sugar
2 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla sugar
3 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed (mine were 137 grammes peeled)
175 ml yoghurt
280 grammes white wheat flour  (I think: to be honest, I forgot to take notes….)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

Whisk everything together. Line base of a small baking tin (20×30 cm) with baking parchment, tip batter in. and bake at 180C for 25 minutes or so, until cake is golden and spring to the touch. I usually test with a wooden skewer. Maybe a pinch of salt on top next time.