Monday, 6 March 2017

COCONUT & BANANA CAKE

Watching the 'Sound of Music' for the umpteenth time this year, whilst biting into a slice of  Coconut & Banana cake with lashings of cream Cheese is a comforting experience for a Sunday evening.

 
It's only natural to bake a Banana cake when you have over ripened Bananas in your fruit basket. The Bananas I used were the small and sweeter variety from Sri Lanka known as 'Seeni Kesel', which is similar to the sweetness of the local Ghanaian Bananas. I wish I had access to the local Ghanaian Bananas, especially with some roasted Peanuts. Yum!

 
Cooking is a therapeutic experience for me and most times it evokes a nostalgic memory that I like to relive.

Today I missed my Aunty Catherine who died of cancer, over 20 years ago. She was beautiful, strong, kind and I enjoyed spending time with her.

 

She loved baking bread and had a clay oven, which gave her bread a unique taste. At times, when she was tired of kneading the dough, she'll get us to pound the dough as one would Fufu till she achieved the right texture. I loved her ingenuity and her passion for cooking, which she shared with my Mum.
 I remember when she started her mushroom farm and delivered the excess to nearby hotels and her love for gardening. I named her home 'parks and gardens'. 
My Mum and her sister (Aunty Catherine) were very close and I was guaranteed to see her and my lovely cousins every Saturday morning on their way to the food market, as they passed by our home.
Saturday mornings were fun, as I had all the people I cherished in one place. The added bonus will be urging  my Aunty, to ask my Mum to allow me spend the night with them. Bliss.


On occasions that I could spend the night, I watched the 'Sound of Music' with my Aunty and cousins, enjoying a cup of hot Chocolate and a slice of her famous bread or cake. 
Today, I decided to honour that memory by watching the 'Sound of music' and enjoying a slice of my freshly baked Banana and Coconut cake.

 

 Continue to rest in peace Aunty dearest and thanks for the memories.

For the recipe you'll need,

225g of plain flour
1 tablespoonful of baking powder 
150g of salted butter
Half a teaspoon of ground Mace or Nutmeg 
Half a teaspoon of Vanilla extract 
Half a teaspoon of mixed spice
8 mashed over ripened small Bananas or 4 large Bananas.
2 beaten free range eggs
150g of Muscovado Sugar
150g of Coconut flakes
70ml of semi skimmed milk
A pinch of salt

To garnish
50g of Coconut flakes soaked in 3 tablespoonful of water.
1 teaspoon of Muscovado sugar
1 large peeled Banana cut lengthways in two.

To serve 
Cream cheese.
  
 

Method 
Place a saucepan on a low heat and melt the butter.
Add the Muscovado sugar, Nutmeg or Mace, Vanilla extract and mixed spice. 

Stir till the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has a silky consistency. This should take about 5 minutes. Add the 150g of Coconut flakes and milk. 

Mix everything together, turn the heat off and set aside for at least 20 minutes. 
This softens the Coconut flakes and allows the flavours to infuse.

Meanwhile sprinkle the remaining 50g of Coconut flakes with 3 tablespoonful of water and set aside. (This will soften the Coconut flakes and prevent it from burning , when used as a topping later). 

Preheat the oven to 170*c
Once the mixture has completely cooled down, add the beaten egg and mashed Bananas. Stir till well combined.

Add the baking powder to the flour and mix well. Add the mixed flour to the Banana mixture and stir, till well combined.

Grease a 2lb loaf tin or line with a baking parchment. Pour the cake mixture into the loaf tin and even out the surface using a spoon dipped into water.

Sprinkle the surface of the cake mixture with the soaked Coconut flakes, Muscovado sugar and place the split Bananas on opposite sides of the cake mixture.

 

Place the cake mixture in the middle of your oven and leave it to bake for 20-25 minutes.

Insert a wooden a skewer (20 minutes into the cooking time) and if it comes out clean, your cake is ready. 

Once cooked transfer the cake unto a  rack and leave it to cool down for about 5 minutes.

 

Slice your cake and enjoy it with your preferred fruit juice or Sherry.

Find more inspiring recipes on my blog and YouTube channel, 'Ndudu by Fafa'. 

Chef Fafa on ITV, 'This Morning'.


All photos, videos and recipes are by the owner of this blog.