So today’s post takes me back to my Australian East Coast travels and more specifically to Coff’s Harbour, aka the Big Banana. Heading to this part of the coast only really means one thing – surf camp.
I had only been surfing once before this – in Devon on New Years day. Let’s just say it wasn’t a truly positive experience. I am not sure what was worse, the panic attack of hitting the ice cold water or being hit in the head with the board on numerous occasions!
Therefore, rocking up at a SURF camp was not my idea of fun! That having been said, I did really enjoy my time there and I even managed to stand up on the board 🙂
Now being the true Girl Guide trooper that I am, no camp would be complete with out a fire and no fire would be complete without marshmallows and digestive biscuits to make makeshift smores and no makeshift smores would be complete without tea! Unfortunately, Aussie marshmallows are not nice at all so thank goodness we had some Yorkshire tea to save the day!
Now, although Aussie marshmallows don’t quite cut it, Banana Bread is a big hit Down Under and what better place to grab a slice than from the Big Banana city itself!? Famously called so for the Big Banana amusement park that is based there. I didn’t actually get a chance to go but I am sure it would have been a whole bunch of fun ;).
I am a hugeee banana fan and it therefore came as a pleasant surprise that banana bread is extremely big in Oz and is served in most cafés. It is standard practice out there to have a big chunky slab for breakfast – a custom that I could most certainly get used to!
Have you ever tried it toasted!? It is amazing! Just quite literally grab a piece of banana bread/cake (does anyone actually known the difference between the two!?) and put it in a toastie machine or under the grill! I had never heard of this concept before and it was really delicious.
I reckon banana bread toasties could be the next craze – The banoastie? Okay so the branding needs a bit of work but the concept is golden right? 😉
Banana cake is one of my favourite types of cakes (following ever so closely behind my all time favourites – carrot cake and lemon cake!). I have a ‘go-to’ recipe which never fails and to jazz it up, from time to time, I throw in some chocolate chips. Or when I’m feeling adventurous I whip up some Oreo buttercream and make a banana and Oreo sandwich cake.
Now, throughout my experiments with a more wholesome lifestyle I have also developed a gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free alternative to my classic favourite. Admittedly, it is less fluffy, buttery and sweet than my original recipe BUT it is not compromised on flavour and is perfect for breakfast or a post-workout fueling.
You can choose to mix it up however you wish. I actually found it quite hard to pin down an exact recipe as I change it every time. I am a huge pecan fan so lately I have been putting pecans in. But, you can throw in just about anything – raw cocoa nibs for a chocolatey taste, flaxseeds for added omega-3, adjust the amount of maple syrup for more or less sweetness, any nuts or additional fruit would also go perfectly.
This banana bread recipe is also gorgeous toasted – drizzle with maple syrup and add pecans for a real treat! 🙂
Have a bonkers day, make a banoastie!
Traditional Banana Cake
8 oz Plain Flour
6 oz Golden Caster Sugar
4 oz Butter
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
3 Mashed Bananas
A little milk (if needed!)
Chocolate chips (optional)
- Preheat the oven to gas mark 4
- Cream together the butter and sugar
- Add in the egg and mix until well combined
- Sift in the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and mix until well combined
- Pour in a little milk if you wish and then stir in the mashed bananas
- Throw in some chocolate chips for a chocolate banana cake.
- Pour into a loaf tin and bake for at least 45 minutes. Depending on the tin this cake could take up to an hour to cook so keep checking after this time.
- For an oreo banana cake line an 8inch cake tin with Oreos, pour the mixture over and bake. To make the Oreo buttercream, cream together 125g of butter and 250g of icing sugar and 1 tsp of vanilla bean paste. Then stir in half a pack of crushed Oreos.
Wholesome Banana Cake
4 mashed bananas
140g of almond butter
4 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
75g of coconut flour
1 tsp of cinnamon
1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp of baking powder
2 tbsp of flaxseed meal
1 tbsp of maple syrup
1 1/2 tbsp of raw cocoa nibs
2 tbsp chopped pecans
- Grease one loaf pan with coconut oil and preheat the oven to gas mark 3
- Combine the mashed bananas, eggs, coconut oil, almond butter and maple syrup until well mixed
- Add the coconut flour, cinnamon, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and flaxseed meal and stir until all is mixed.
- Stir in the raw cocoa nibs (if you would like a chocoately taste!) and pecans (if you wish!)