Hi it’s Jess here, so this post isn’t much to do with travelling, it is however a lot to do with one hell of a tasty banana cake recipe that I’ve played around with for months and have (hopefully!) perfected.
Now if you’re anything like me you’ll hate seeing perfectly usable, overripe bananas going to waste and it was after stumbling upon a bunch of browning, sticky bananas in the back of Ben’s uni kitchen that I first took to making this recipe (much to the delight of his housemates!). This cake has no added sugar in it so it’s perfect if you want something that has all the taste of a moist banana cake but you can feel somewhat healthy whilst eating it. I’ve also made this cake reasonably vegan friendly as it already has no eggs and you just need to replace the small amount of butter with a vegan replacement like soya… et voila healthy and vegan banana cake!
One thing to keep an eye out for with this cake is not to overcook it as it will cook very quickly on the outside but stay almost as cake mixture on the inside. It’s not the kind of cake that will leave the cake tester/knife clean after sticking it through the middle but to be honest it’s best like that, gooey on the inside and crispy on the out! I’ve made the mistake before of repeatedly taking it out of the oven, sticking in the cake tester, seeing it’s gooey and throwing it back in until there’s a ridiculous cooking time of about 500 hours and all you want is a nice piece of warm cake!
Once it’s out of the oven all you need to do is trust in the cake and as it cools it slowly hardens meaning it’s less tricky to cut if you don’t want to risk the mess of hot gooeyness (but lets be honest it’s totally worth getting mess all over yourself and surfaces and floor and curtains to have a piece of warm cake!)
Ok onto the actual recipe!
1. Start off by turning the oven to 160C (gas mark 3, 320f), measuring out the ingredients and placing the butter in a mixing bowl. Line the loaf tin with grease proof paper, then fully melt the butter in the microwave for around 20seconds (this can also be done in a saucepan over the hob).
2. Next add in the bananas and completely mash them into the butter.
3. After the banana is well mashed throw in a handful or so of sultanas (raisins, mixed fruit, walnuts or anything you fancy also works) and mix them into the mashed banana/butter mix.
4. Combine the baking powder with the flour then add both to the banana/butter/sultana mix. You can sieve in the flour/baking powder if you’re feeling fancy but if not just chucking the lot in does the job just fine for this cake!
5. The final step is to mix in a couple of teaspoons of cinnamon.
6. Give it all a good mix and pour it into a loaf tin. I have also made this recipe as cupcakes before which work really well and take a significantly less amount of time to cook (perfect if you want a quick, healthy snack!). Word of warning though if you’re going to make them as cupcakes make sure you use the silicone cupcake moulds instead of paper cases as the mixture is quite sticky and it will just end up clinging to the paper after it’s cooked and will mean you’ll miss out on half your cake!
7. Bake for around 45 – 60 minutes (or 15 minutes for cupcakes), checking it every so often as every oven cooks slightly differently and then put the kettle on, sit back, relax and breathe in those wonderful smells of a cooking cake (which I am doing this very minute whilst writing this post!).
Now I would say after taking it out of the oven leave it to cool for a good five-ten minutes before attempting to take it out of the tin, however I would be lying if I said I did that! So grab a knife and dig in!
Perfect to be enjoyed with a cuppa.
150g self-raising flour (wholemeal self-raising also works)
50g of butter, melted (or vegan alternative)
3-4 mashed bananas depending on their size
A handful of sultanas or your chosen dried fruit
1 tsp of baking powder
2tsps of ground cinnamon
(side note: you can add a tablespoon of honey to the mix depending on how sweet you like your cake, I did this when the banana’s were not quite ripe enough.)
I hope you enjoyed the post and let us know how your attempts at this cake went!