At the beginning of the year, I decided to make a few small changes in my eating habits – nothing drastic (as if I could actually give up on all good food things ;)) and started walking each day. 6months done the track, I had lost 7kg and had signed up for the SleekGeek online community and their 8week challenge PLUS I purchased the plan from BodyBoss for added motivation (both exercise and meal plan ideas). 8months down the track and 11kg was gone… *poof*
Anyone who knows me, knows that I love food and Sunday pancakes are pretty much a monthly event in our household – which is why I started to try out different pancake recipes from the BodyBoss meal plan booklet.
I call these Banana pancakes … while they call it “berry me in pancakes”… whatever it is called – they are delicious!!
1 cup of flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1 large banana (mashed)
- Mix flour and bicarb of soda in one bowl
- In another bowel, mix together the banana, milk and vanilla extract
- Carefully add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and lightly mix together (don’t!! overmix!!)
- lightly wipe a non-stick frying pan with oil
- Spoon mixture onto frying pan and cook over a medium heat
- cook on both sides, until golden
- Serve as you wish (I added some homemade strawberry jam and a handful of berries to mine)
There are always bananas in our house – either green, yellow or turning a nasty shade of brown. There are always frozen bananas in our freezer which are perfect for smoothies or fake ice-cream. And I regularly bake a banana bread with the excuse that I am using up the over-ripe bananas…. any excuse really 🙂
I have no idea where this recipe came from as it is in my hand-written recipe book… which probably came from my mothers hand-written recipe book. But origins aside – it is an absolute winner! Quick, easy and tasty.
cup of sugar
cup of mashed banana
1 banana sliced length ways
60ml plain yoghurt
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (or baking soda)
- Mix butter, sugar, eggs, mashed banana & yoghurt together
- Sift in Flour, bicarb & baking powder
- Beat on a low speed
- Pour into a greased loaf tin
- Arrange sliced banana on top
- Bake at 180C for 50-60min
2016 was a crazy busy year (you can read our overview here) and 2017 has started off with a whole lot of *new-ness*… New apartment, newly fitted kitchen (still waiting for the scratched counter top to be replaced and the subway tiles to go up between the counters as a backsplash) and a new car!!
But obviously the most important in terms of this blog is the new kitchen… and a new oven (brand spanking new!!) which obviously needed to be tested. So we baked a Banana Yoghurt Loaf out of the *Recipes from the Royal Kitchen* cookbook by Heilie Pienaar (South African food stylist).
Easy to make and probably ranks up there with the best of the banana bread loaves that I have ever made! And still moist and delicious on day 3 if it lasts that long!
Would I make it again? YES
Banana Yoghurt Loaf
2.5 cups cake flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
80g butter (room temperature)
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup sugar
1 cup plain yoghurt
3 large bananas, peeled & mashed
- Sift flour, baking powder & salt
- Rub in butter with fingertips to make a fine crumb
- Beat eggs & sugar together
- Add yoghurt to wet mixture
- Add wet mixture to dry ingredients
- Fold in mashed bananas until combined
- Bake in a grease-proof lined loaf tin for 50min at 180C
I recently saw this recipe on Alida Ryder’s website (called Simply Delicious) – except hers didn’t have the coconut addition.
Breakfast in our house is a very standard affair – especially for HIM… who always has 2 slices of toast with cheese & ham – while mine can vary from time to time – but toast or porridge is pretty normal. However… on really special occasions… pancakes make an appearance.
And on Monkey’s 1st birthday – I decided to make a batch of these… mostly because they are sugar free and included banana & oats (all good things)… but also because I loved how gorgeous they looked on Alida’s blog!
I adapted her recipe by adding 1/4 cup of milk – as the mixture was too thick as well as the desiccated coconut. They aren’t particularly sweet which is why I added a good pour of golden syrup to mine 🙂
Chocolate Banana Coconut & Oat Pancakes
2 ripe banana’s
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/2 cup milk
- Place all ingredients into a bowl and using a hand blender – blend until mixture is smooth
- leave to rest for 10-20minutes
- Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat
- Fry spoonfuls of the batter (1-2min on each side) until brown
Our latest fruit and vegetable delivery was a bit disappointing with all the fruit at the peak of ripeness on the day of their arrival. This meant that we had to think (aka eat) quickly before items were beyond saving.
The banana’s however were well-ripe on day 3, and with 4 left on the bunch (after both of us eating one each day prior to that) – I knew that it was time to make this recipe!
The BBC Good Food Magazine (May 2016 issue) had a recipe for “sticky upside-down banana cake”. I made a few changes by omitting the ground ginger and using buttermilk instead of soured cream in the cake mix and all in all, it turned out pretty well. HIM happily devoured a few slices and said it reminded him a Portuguese Honey cake.
This is a DEFINITE make again kind of cake… something that I was able to whip up relatively quickly with a 10month old sitting on the floor next to me playing with plastic containers… and I had it in the oven before boredom rolled in for her!
Banana Upside down cinnamon cake
150g muscovado sugar
2.5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
300g caster sugar
120g butter, softened
3 large eggs
- Place butter (80g) & sugar into a saucepan over a medium heat until melted & combined
- Pour into greased cake tin
- Cut bananas in half and arrange on top of the caramel
- To make batter, beat together sugar and softened butter, adding eggs one at a time
- Then add flour, baking powder, cinnamon & buttermilk and continue to mix/whisk until smooth & evenly combined
- Pour batter over bananas
- Bake for 50-60min at 180C
Vegetables in a cake means it is ok to have more than one slice, right? Right???
I had a few banana’s that were starting to ripen quicker than we could eat them (I mean, I can only eat one a day… and soon as they get ripe & soft, I am immediately put of) and of course… carrots. We always have carrots – for dipping in hummus, for the base of soups, to boil as a side vegetable when I am really lazy… etc
I found this recipe on the Good to Know website (my first time visiting) and I have to admit it was a really easy recipe to make. Instead of using mixed spice – I used half a teaspoon of cinnamon.
Would I make it again? Yes.. Yes…Yes
Carrot and Banana Cake
280g Self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 ripe banana’s (peeled & mashed)
220g carrots (peeled & grated)
3 eggs (beaten)
170ml sunflower oil
- Sift flour, baking powder & cinnamon
- Stir in raisins & sugar
- Beat eggs with oil and add to dry ingredients along with carrots & banana
- Bake in a greased cake tin for 50minutes at 180C
- Leave to cool on a wire cooling tray
Cream cheese Icing
50g Butter (softened)
300g Icing sugar
150g cream cheese
- Beat butter with icing sugar until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs
- Beat in the cream cheese until smooth
- Cut cake in half and sandwich together with half of the icing. Use the rest of the icing to cover the top of the cake
I have to apologize for the radio silence over the last few weeks… and give a little explanation.
The month of March saw some very disturbing occurrences in Brussels, Belgium (the city where we live)… with bombs exploding at Zaventem (Brussels) Airport as well as one of the Metro stations near the EU Buildings (Maalbeek). This left most inhabitants a bit shell shocked. We all put on our best & bravest face and tried to continue our day to day activities as much as possible, so as not to let the terrorists win with their *fear* tactics … but deep down inside, we were all hurting. For the senseless loss of life, the realization that this was happening in our own city and that no place on earth was ever truly safe… even if the army and police presence was everywhere we turned since the Paris attacks in November 2015.
Normally, I would turn to my kitchen for a bit of therapy… cooking or baking has always calmed me down and of course… eating – but instead, I spent more time with HIM & Little Miss… we headed an hour outside of the city for a little staycation around the Easter weekend. Plus, both Little Miss and I spent a good portion of the month sick (her with Gastro… poor thing… and me with a pretty intense bout of flu that still had me coughing & spluttering 5weeks down the track).
But now… the dust is starting to settle… not only are the inhabitants of the city continuing on with their lives, but even Brussels airport has re-opened with flights departing & arriving since Sunday 3rd April 2016 (even if the whole airport process is more complicated and requires travelers to be there 3hr before their flights) – and I decided it was high time that I got my “a” back into “g” (ass back into gear) and started sharing more food related posts again.
This Buttermilk Banana Loaf recipe was adapted from “I am baker” and proved to be easy to make as well as easy to eat. It was less *banana-ish* than my normal loaves, and the inclusion of buttermilk was minor. But still… a definite make again.
Buttermilk Banana Loaf
1/2 cup of butter (softened)
1 and 1/2 cups of sugar
2-3 large bananas (mashed)
1/4 cup of buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
2 cups all purpose cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
pinch of salt
- Sift together dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, bicarb & salt)
- Cream butter & sugar together
- Add eggs to sugar/butter mixture one at a time, beating between each addition
- Mix in buttermilk & vanilla essence until just combined
- Slowly fold in the dry sifted mixture
- Mix until just combined and then also fold in the mashed banana
- Pour in a greased loaf pan
- Bake for 50-60minutes at 180C
Today is my first day back at work… after almost 4months of maternity leave and what can I say, except that I would have loved more time with the Little Miss… watching her grow and learn each day has filled my heart with so much love that words can not adequately describe.
So with babies on my mind… I revert back to the dessert that I made for New Years Eve… our first time celebrating as a *bigger* family and this time with two other “new” families and their little ones!
This dessert is sweet (duh!?!), easy to make and combines two of my favourite things – caramel AND banana!
I found the recipe in the BBC Good Food Magazine (April 2015 issue), although I omitted the cream, caramel and fresh banana topping for decoration purposes.
200g digestive biscuits (crushed)
100g butter (melted)
4 banana’s (peeled & sliced)
900g cream cheese
85g icing sugar (sifted)
1 Tablespoon maple syrup
300g caramel (I used a tin of Carnation)
- Mix crushed biscuits with melted butter and press into a greased springform tin to create a base.
- Place in fridge to chill
- Fry banana in a little bit of butter, remove from pan and leave to cool
- Arrange bananas on top of biscuit base
- To make cheesecake mix – whisk double cream until softly whipped.
- Place cream cheese & icing sugar in a large bowl and whisk until smooth
- Add whipped cream along with maple syrup & caramel to cream cheese mix
- Spoon over banana/base
- Place in fridge for at least 4 hours (or overnight) to set
That’s right folks – it is Secret Recipe Club time again!
For those who aren’t aware – SRC (Secret Recipe Club) is an international blog swap concept whereby each month, a blogger is assigned another bloggers site with the intention of re-creating a recipe, blogging about it and sharing it on the same day at the same time as the rest of the group. It is great fun!
This month – I got 2 Cookin’ Mamas – a mother/daughter blogging team by the names of Linda & Christina, who focus on providing easy & healthy recipes for busy moms! Something that I can definitely relate to … especially now that Little Miss is 2months old and definitely keeping me busy!
They have co-authored a cookbook together and Mom (aka Linda) has 40years of cooking experience under her belt… but she keeps her svelte figure by being an aerobics instructor (as well as working in Marketing) while Christina is a certified Nutritionist. So basically two skinny ladies with a love of food … I wasn’t even sure that this was possible 🙂 But trust me … it is.. and with delicious food!!
I was tempted by their Quick & easy Parmesan bread rolls, double chocolate banana bread , cheesy orzo with broccoli and and and and…. – but finally decided that I wanted (rephrase “needed”) to make the Nutella swirled banana bread! I made it without the chocolate spread as I am not a fan of frostings… but let me tell you this, it is delicious and sweet enough with it!
SOOO delicious! Do yourself a favour… make this!
Nutella swirled banana bread
1.5 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 ripe banana’s (peeled & mashed)
2 eggs (beaten)
1/4 cup oil
1/2 cup Nutella (or whatever your favourite chocolate spread is)
- combine dry ingredients together
- in another bowl – mix banana’s, eggs and oil together
- Combine wet mixture & dry
- Separate evenly into two bowls – adding nutella to the one mixture
- Drop spoonfuls of each batter into a greased loaf tin
- Bake at 180C for 60-70min
Seriously… just as the title reveals – this is probably my new GO-TO recipe for using up ripe banana’s…. super easy, super moist and they lasted for about 4days (but this was because I refused to share… and therefore had to eat 11 of them by myself… (I gave HIM 1))
And trust me – I have tried a few Banana muffin/bread recipes!!!!
I found this recipe on the BBC Good Food Website (yes – my favourite recipe searching site) – and although the recipe was originally for a loaf… I did adapt it somewhat… I baked them in individual muffin sized pan… and omitted the lemon drizzle, as I really don’t think it was required (but of course – you can try it their way …)
This is not only a *make again* kind of recipe – this is the kind that you print out, share and make sure that you use for that upcoming baking challenge… yes, it is THAT good! (And easy… and only 6 ingredients!)
Banana Muffins (best ever)
140g Butter, softened
140g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 ripe banana’s, mashed
(excuse the icing sugar – which I never landed up using as I didn’t make the “drizzle”)
- Cream butter & sugar together
- Add eggs one at a time, beating between each addition
- Sift in flour & baking powder
- Fold in, including mashed banana
- Place into greased muffin tins
- Bake for 20-30min @ 180C
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