The timing – the co-incidence of circumstances – was so perfect it was clearly the universe making a point.
My excess ingredient today was overripe bananas. After Christmas, the last I thing needed to be doing was cooking anything cake-y, but what can you do? There were the bananas, the skins starting go black, just begging to be made into banana cake.
The fact it’s one of my favourite cakes is a minor detail. There was also the fact the cricket had been called off because of the rain, and that the whole house was open to the cooling breeze after a couple of stinking days, so I could put the oven on with impunity.
I’ve made a bit of a study of banana cakes/breads over the years. This one is the one that won. I have no idea where I got the recipe from, so I can’t credit it to a source. What I have is a handwritten and then adapted recipe on a sheet of old notepad paper, with barely any method at all.
What I can tell you is that it is light and delicious.
What I detail here is what I did this time, and it worked. What variation I did last time is anyone’s guess!
The measure of its greatness is that I was quite brutal with it – adding extra flour at the end, taking it out of the oven and putting it back in when I realised it wasn’t cooked enough (you can see some of the damage I did in the texture) – but it still tasted absolutely wonderful. Be kind to it, and it will be even better.
Sift into a bowl and combine:
300g self-raising flour (This is an extra 50g of flour on the original recipe, added at the end, because the mix seemed just too sloppy)
115g caster sugar
40g light brown sugar
40g coconut (which I didn’t have so I used coconut crunch, which is a kind of coconut flesh)
Mix in a bowl:
2-3 overripe bananas (mine were large)
2 beaten eggs
150ml milk (I used some kefir)
100g melted butter
2tsp vanilla extract
Combine the contents of the two bowls and mix thoroughly.
Pour into a 20cm square cake tin and cook at 180C for 25-30 minutes. Or cook in a loaf tin for about an hour.
Verdict: Simple, but truly delicious. Great with yoghurt or ice cream.