I have been watching the inaugural Great Australian Bake Off, sadly we are now nearing the end. This TV show has ignited a baking revival in all sorts of nooks and crannies, even at the man's workplace, where lovely bakes have been turning up for morning teas. Somehow (I will kill that man!) I have been entered into a Banana Cake Challenge! I am very fond of banana cake, but have not actually made one myself. Even worse, is the fact that a couple of his colleagues claim to bake the best ever banana cakes!
So the first cake arrived at work last week baked by the Operations Manager Tony who hails from “The Motherland” and is a dab hand at Banana Cake....... (his recipe to follow)....this received a reserved mark of 8/10, (a touch harsh I thought). Sadly not a crumb was brought home for me to taste.
I started to trawl the books for a recipe. My goodness the pressure was on. Unfortunately, I wasn't very enthused by any I found, I was looking for something special, but decided to give Nigella's Banana Breakfast Ring a go for starters. Its simple, requiring no equipment to speak of, just a bowl and fork, with ingredients I had to hand, my sort of cooking.
450g (3 medium) bananas
60ml olive oil
3 eggs lightly beaten
zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
200g caster sugar
325g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
How to do it.....
Preheat oven to 180C (gas mark 4) 160C fan forced
Oil a 24cm/ 1.5 litre cake ring (I floured mine too - I am always nervous it won't turn out)
Mash bananas in a bowl,
Add the oil,
Add beaten eggs, lemon juice and zest,
Whisk everything together
Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarb of soda together and fold into mixture
Pour into oiled tin and bake for 30mins or until a skewer comes out clean when tested.
Let the ring sit for about 5-10 minutes before turning out.
This cake makes 8-10 slices.
This is not the "show stopper" I was looking for.
So a couple of other recipes will need to be sourced and tested.
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It is however, a lovely little plain cake, nice and light in colour and texture,
with a nice crumb - to coin a Bake Off phrase. Easy to prepare, quick to cook -nothing fancy. It can be drizzled with maple syrup or honey.
Nigella says it is a perfect breakfast slice and I would have to agree with that. Gently banana-ish and not too sweet. Smeared with butter, perfect with a cup of tea.