Tag Archives: banana

Banana Brownies

When you have too many bananas there’s only so much you can do.  Banana bread is the usual staple bake. It’s simple and cost effective.  And quick.  But this time I wanted to add more than the usual handful of chocolate drops into the mixture.  So I came up with this, equally easy,  but slightly more decadent recipe.

Bananas are the staple fruit of most households, and athletes.  when we go any major orienteering event there must be hundreds upon hundreds of bananas consumed. Bananas are an excellent source of potassium and vitamin B6, fibre and carbohydrate, and supply some vitamin C. Since they have a lower water content than most fruit, bananas typically have more calories as well as a higher sugar content compared to other non-tropical fruits. This is good for those, like me, who will, no doubt be out on a mountain for quite some time!

Bananas are soothing to the digestion due to their high content of pectin – as soluble fibre that not only lowers cholesterol but normalises bowel function. The high fibre content of bananas helps you to feel full, another bonus if you will not see food again for some time.  No point being distracted from your running by a grumbling tummy!

The resistant starch in bananas also has a prebiotic effect, helping to keep gut bacteria happy by increasing the production of short chain fatty acids for digestive health. And you all by now know my obsession with healthy gut bacteria!

Banana Brownies

Continue reading

A Muffle of Muffins

As you know I bake regularly for a cafe in Tramore. We decided to try muffins as an addition to the menu.  I  then had the happy task of trying some flavours out to the critics at home.

I was going with sweet as opposed to savoury muffins, and tried three flavours (drumroll please….)

Blueberry & Chia Seed  (to support the local business)

Banana & Chocolate (as there’d have to chocolate in ONE of them)

and lastly:

Caramelised Apple and Raisin

I debated before- (mostly with myself) what the differences are between a cup cake and a muffin.  For me- it’s two things- I don’t believe that a muffin needs icing.  Whereas a cupcake looks unfinished if not iced. The other is the texture and taste, the cupcake is just a miniature cake, whereas the muffin is not so refined, generally not as sweet and often flavoured with fruit.

First up was the Blueberry And Chia Seed Muffins
Muffins

Blueberry & Chia Seed Muffin

This baby is just belting out the healthy eating vibes.  Chia seeds are the buzz food of 2016, and add a nice topping and texture to the antioxidant busting blueberries in the mix.

Next Up:

Caramelised Apple and Raisin

This took a little longer to make, peeling apples is a pet hate of mine.  But I got through it- thanks for the concern. These ones had no specific topping, so I dusted them with some icing sugar.

Muffins

Caramelised Apple & Raisin

And last but not least-

Banana & Chocolate

These muffins were nearly too light in texture, which was odd really, as banana tends to make bakes a little soggy.

Muffins

Tasting went according to plan, and was civilised for a change. As usual we all had differing favourites.  ME? I think the banana and chocolate is a smidgeon ahead of the apple and raisin.  But really, I’d eat any of them.  Might try savoury ones next….

Book Review: Lolas Forever

Lola's Forever

Lolas Forever

I got this book as an offer with my new Peggy Porschen “Love Layer” book.  And really I have no idea why it’s taken me so long to bake something from it.  I set my youngest the task of choosing what to bake, and we actually both came up with the same idea.  Banofee Cupcakes.

Banoffee Cupcake

Banoffee Cupcake

Bananas √

Cream Cheese/ Mascarpone √

Salted Caramel √

All in all it was going to be a winner.

As always when I’m making a recipe for the first time, I followed the recipe religiously.  When I got to the part about filling the muffin cases I ran into a little difficulty.  The method said to use an ice cream scoop to put the batter in the cases.  But my batter was VERY licky, so I just poured.  Then injecting the salted caramel (I bought some- I know, I know- but it was late!) was tricky, even with my filling nozzle.

"Filling" nozzle

“Filling” nozzle

They went into the oven with a bit of a prayer, and soon the kitchen smelt just fabulous.  Family members casually walking into the kitchen sniffing the air.

Lola banoffee cupcakes

Banana cupcakes

The icing was just SO good, a creamy blend of mascarpone, cream cheese, and icing sugar. Decadence, and not cheap either- relegating them to special occasion cupcakes. I should have mixed the salted caramel through the icing, but followed the recipe, to “drizzle” it over after piping.  My caramel was too thick, and although I could have warmed it, it was very late at that stage, and the wolves were circling for tasting.

Decorating in progress

Decorating in progress

To be honest, my food photography was seriously lacking.  Maybe the smell of goodnesss overpowered me.  But judging by the number of likes on FB when I posted the half eaten one- they did look good!

Lolas cupcakes

Banoffee Cupcakes

I would definitely make these again, and am thinking of trying the recipe as a cake next time.  I think because there are so many bakeries in London doing a similar thing, for me Lola’s gets a bit lost.  But if I spotted them as I was passing, I would go in and try one!