There are two good reasons for this banana loaf cake after a bit of a hiatus in my kitchen. First, it’s autumn and finally feeling REALLY autumn now and we seem to be in the mood for comfort. (Also why you’ll be seeing more bread-making posts soon!) The second is that we can never seem to finish the bananas in our house and it’s always a great excuse to put those overripe bananas into good use!
I’m rather partial to banana cake while my son and his dad loves chocolate muffins. I can’t think of a better recipe to make everyone absolutely happy. This loaf cake has the texture of a chocolate muffin with banana bread—just a beautiful combination for a sweet breakfast paired with a well-extracted espresso that lingers after you’re done or as an afternoon tea ‘perk-me-up’ treat with Devonshire tea…I love both! My personal touch for this banana loaf has to be my signature Cointreau orange liqueur icing that lends a perfect balance with its sweet-bitter orangey-citrusy zest. I love it with my chocolate muffins and chocolate cinnamon scrolls too. Mmm..my little bit of heaven in the mornings. Too good to keep to myself, so I’m sharing it with you. Other ideas for extending the joy of this recipe—add toppings such as raisins, sultanas, nuts like walnuts, pecans or macadamia, or my other favourite, chocolate chips. I do wonder what people add to theirs. What about you. Do you have a special icing you tend to favour over the rest? What liqueurs or extracts do you tend to use most for icing your cakes or desserts?
100g unsalted butter
250g self-raising flour
150g light brown muscovado sugar
2 large eggs
2-3 large bananas
3 T cocoa powder (melted into paste with 2 TB boiling water)
120 g icing sugar, 1 TB milk & 1 TB Cointreau
Heat the oven to about 180 degrees (350 F). Grease a large loaf tin (900g) and line with parchment paper.
Melt butter in a bowl (about the size of a noodle bowl)in the microwave in short bursts of 25-30 seconds on Medium High temperature according to your microwave settings. Let it cool slightly by putting aside.
Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl, and add the sugar to it after, mixing well with a wooden spoon to break up any lumps.
Mash the bananas on a flat plate with a fork. Crack the eggs into a small bowl and lightly beat. Add the eggs to the cooled melted butter, then add bananas into the egg-butter mixture.
Now add the egg-butter-banana mix into the flour and sugar mixing bowl, and using a wooden spoon or spatula, just fold in lightly till just mixed. Do not over-mix.
Now melt the cocoa powder in a small bowl with boiling water and using a small spoon, mix it into a thick paste.
Pour the banana loaf batter into the greased and lined loaf tin. Take the cocoa paste and add dollops of it randomly into the top of the batter in the tin. Use a chopstick to make a swirly marble pattern.
Place in oven and bake from 20 to 25 minutes. Once done, leave on a wire rack to cool. Drizzle some Cointreau Icing over the top, or sprinkle with icing sugar and cocoa powder before serving.