OK, so this household is having a complete rejuvenated love affair with Jamie Oliver, the likes it has not seen since his Naked Chef days. I think it was seeing his hard slog in the US and how it knocked the wind out of his sails a bit that did it. It was cemented with his 20 Minute Meal iPhone app. Man I love that. Then there was his Christmas series which was just so quirky and lovely. And now, well now there is his 30 minute meal series (I’m gagging for the book because yeah, I really need another cookbook) and the whole household, well, me and Felix, are hooked.
The other night he made this awesome looking number involving salmon fillets, prawns and asparagus. Salmon fillets normally make me gag but I was all YUM about that. And then, THEN he made a quick banoffee pie.
Cue Felix badgering me for the last two days to go to the shops to buy the ingredients. And can I tell you – if you do use a store-bought pie crust, which we totally broke my religion and did, then this comes together in an absolute snap.
The filling is delightful – far less tooth-achingly sweet than pure pie-caramel and not over-powering in the banana department. An absolute winner.
Jamie Oliver’s 30 minute meal Banoffee Pie
- 1 store bought pie crust
- 2 bananas
- 100ml milk
- 4 tbsp caster sugar
- 300ml cream
- 1 tbsp camp coffee
- 2 bananas, extra
- 100g block of dark chocolate
- Blitz the two bananas with the milk until well combined and smooth
- In a pan over high heat melt the caster sugar. Don’t stir it, just gently tilt as it melts to a dark caramel colour
- Add the banana milk mixture to the toffee, stirring until the toffee melts back into the bananas
- Pour into the pie case and freeze for 20 minutes (we didn’t need it to be within 30 minutes so just put it in the fridge)
- Whip the cream and then fold through the camp coffee essence so it leaves pretty swirls in the cream
- Slice the bananas and arrange over the pie filling, then spoon the cream over the top
- Place the chocolate bar on the benchtop, smooth side up. Scrape a sharp chef’s knife on a 45 degree angle across the chocolate towards you, making chocolate curls. Arrange over the top of the cream.
Pip at Meet me at Mike’s said this was the best banana cake ever. I clicked through and saw the picture of it and just had to make it. Now that is quite a call for me because I despise banana bread, particularly that cake-called-bread you get in nearly every single cafe in Sydney and banana cake is not far behind.
But make it I did and ZOMG, best.cake.ever. When Felix, who is not a cake lover, devoured it, mumbling, ‘this is one of the best cakes you’ve ever made’, you know it has to be good.
So, if any of you are sitting there biting fingernails as the election results come in, go do some baking instead.
Banana and Coconut Cake
real living magazine
- 150g butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/3 cup caster sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 ripe medium bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
- ½ cup light sour cream
- 2 cups self-raising flour
- ½ cup desiccated coconut
- Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Grease and line 22cm square cake tin with baking paper.
- In a mixer beat the butter and sugars until pale and fluffy
- Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition
- Add vanilla, mashed bananas and sour cream and beat to combine
- Beat in flour and coconut and mix until well combined
- Pour into tin and bake for 60 mins or until a skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly in tin, then turn onto wire rack to cool completely
Coconut cream cheese icing
- 125g butter, at room temperature
- 250g cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 cups icing sugar mixture, sieved
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp coconut essence, to taste
- 2/3 cup shredded coconut
- Whip butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy
- Add icing sugar, vanilla and coconut essence and beat for a further few minutes
- When cake has cooled, cut in half horizontally
- Spread one-third of icing over bottom half of cake and top with remaining half
- Ice top and sides with remaining icing and cover in shredded coconut.
- Store in an airtight container. (I kept it in the fridge as leaving a cream cheese icing at room temperature makes me skeevy.)
So I think it’s been well established that I am quite partial to a cake or sweet treat that is good on the tooth. You know, something that has a bit of body to it, something where the reality that cake = wasted calories is blurred by substance as opposed to sweet, light, fluffy air.
It’s one of the reasons I adore Nigella’s Chocolate Gingerbread and my Nan’s Boiled Fruit Cake.
I know, the only person I’m fooling is me but that’s OK. I adore cake. Cake makes everything better.
This is from a friend I have only ever known online and yet she sent me gifts when our fourth son was born and has three boys of her own, so we’re as good as blood.
It is now the only way I can ingest anything like banana cake. So get baking!
Suse’s Banana Parkin
- 125g butter
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup golden syrup
- 2 tsp bicarb
- 1 1/3 cups plain flour
- 3/4 cup rolled oats
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 1 egg
- 1 cup banana, mashed (2-3 bananas)
- Preheat oven to 180C and line a 19cm square pan
- Combine the butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan and heat until the butter is melted and it starts to bubble
- Combine the flour, oats and ginger in a bowl
- Mash the banana with the egg
- Take the butter mixture off the heat and stir in the bicarb until it’s dissolved
- Pour the butter mixture into the flour then fold through the egg and banana mixture
- Bake for 45 minutes
So good with a smear of butter and a cup of tea.
The first time I made this was for a family brunch event. It was still warm from the oven and I had used big, wide, flat chocolate buttons that just oozed as we cut into it. Divine. I’ve also made it with raspberries rather than chocolate, which was equally delicious.
Choc banana bread
Bill Granger, Sydney Food
- 125g butter
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 4 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup choc chips
- 2 cups plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- preheat oven to 180C (350F)
- grease and flour a 19x11cm loaf tin
- cream the butter and sugar together until pale
- add the eggs one at a time
- fold in the bananas, chocolate and vanilla
- add the dry ingredients and be careful not to over mix
- pour into tin and bake for 1hr 15min
The raspberry version
I made it as two smaller loaves, sliced the second loaf and froze it, so this week have popped a slice in the boys lunch box as a little surprise for them.