Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip

Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip
Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip
Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip
Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip
Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip
Chocolate banana bread with mascarpone frosting and caramel drip

So guess what? I've been asked to be on Telly! Now, this isn't a new thing for me (#tbt to MasterChef), but it has been a while since my first debut. It's nerve-wracking, to say the least, but at the same time super exciting and I cannot wait. Lights! Camera! Action! Wait, Where's the guest? She's suffering an onslaught of nerves behind the cameraman. 
Okay, maybe not that drastic...
It's going to be short and sweet but that's ok, its a lot like me. I'm going to be on the SABC 3 Afternoon Express show around 4 pm local time. 

I've chosen to make a double chocolate banana bread and I had to share it with you guys here on the blog. It's so decadent and delicious. It's all the best of old school banana bread with double the chocolate. Cutting into it, the chocolate chips melt and the mascarpone sits there complimenting the sweetness of the choccie perfectly.  (They are a fine pair believe it or not. Full of compliments for each other)
You get a double hit with the caramel sauce because, well, why not. This sauce is so delectable that you could eat it out of the jar! (Which did happen in my case.)  

So hopefully you guys can tune in but if you miss it, that's ok too because I've shared the recipe right here for you! Just make sure you have people around because you can (and will) polish this off all by yourself, in which case, I might have given you diabetes. 
Apologies in advance.


Ingredients:

For the bread:

3 medium-to-large very ripe bananas
1/2 cup (115 grams) butter, melted
3/4 cup (150 grams) brown sugar (I use dark here; either light or dark work)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 cup (about 180 grams) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chunks or chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

For the rum caramel sauce:

1 1/2 tablespoons rum
2 tablespoons milk
3 ½ tablespoons heavy cream
1/3 cup (75 g) granulated sugar
25 g butter
pinch of salt

For the mascarpone frosting: 

250 g mascarpone
1-2 tbsp powdered sugar (or to taste)
½ cup heavy cream

 


Instructions: 

For the bread:

Heat your oven to 180°C. Butter a 9×5-inch loaf pan (23 x 13 x 6 cm), or spray it with a nonstick baking spray.

Mash bananas in the bottom of a large bowl. (You’ll have a little over 1 cup mashed banana total.) Whisk in melted butter, then brown sugar, egg, and vanilla. Place baking soda, salt, flour and cocoa powder in a sifter or fine-mesh strainer and sift over wet ingredients. Stir dry and wet ingredients with a spoon until just combined. Stir in chocolate chunks or chips along with the walnuts.

Pour into prepared pan and bake 55 to 65 minutes, until a tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out batter-free. (A melted chocolate chip smear is expected, however.) Cool in pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edge and invert it out onto a cooling rack. Let cool before frosting. 

For the sauce:

Carefully heat the milk, and cream in a saucepan. It should be hot but not boil.
Meanwhile, put the sugar in another saucepan with a little water and heat until it starts to melt.
Carefully stir sugar with a spoon until all sugar has melted and has become a golden brown color.
Add the butter and stir until melted.
Very carefully add the heated cream mixture.
Stir until smooth, add the salt and pour into a jar to cool. Put in the fridge to become completely cold.

For the mascarpone frosting:

Beat the mascarpone and sugar until smooth. Add cream and beat
until firm.
Generously ice the loaf of banana bread. Drizzle the caramel sauce over and enjoy! 

-Melissa 

Blueberry banana bread

Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread
Blueberry banana bread


I have always been a bit of a fiend for a sugary crust. 
The specific crunch that sugar can create on a crust is perfection. 
Think back to that moment of bliss when you closed your eyes and did a little happy dance over that morsel you just popped in your mouth. 

I suppose it's all about the simple things. Simple things that have the ability to invoke a powerful emotional response.
Complex in their simplicity - these moments and experiences always have so much more going on that meets the eye. 

Unfortunately, it is oftentimes the simple things that are most taken for granted.
In a recent collaboration with Country Road, I had to stop and think about the simple things in life. 
The basics that move me. 

Baking in my kitchen is a staple to my happiness. Only then am I in my element with all my senses being nourished.
To smell a fresh loaf of bread in the oven, to breathe it in and have your heart warmed by it is a simple pleasure that I could go not without. 
In one breath, it has the power to bring my entire childhood back into the here and now rendering me overcome with memories long since forgotten and a lingering feeling of nostalgia that can last for days.

After much thought, I decided to combine my thoughts on these 'simple things' and share something truly special with you.
The Result?

A simple yet sentimental loaf of banana blueberry bread with the ultimate sugary crust.
The baking is a labor of love and smelling it will bring you untold happiness and, well, tasting? You decide. 
Create a moment of reflection for yourself.  

What are your simple things? 


Serves: 6 cooktime: 1h 30m

Ingredients:

  • 3 ripe bananas, smashed - don't have ripe bananas? Put them in the oven at 100 degree Celsius for 40 minutes
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup desiccated coconut
  • ½ cup of blueberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 fresh banana sliced to top the bread.
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Grease your bread loaf tin a 4x8 inch or 10 x 20cm

In a large bowl using an electronic mixer mix the butter and the mashed bananas.

Mix in the sugar, egg and vanilla.

Add the baking soda and salt and mix it into the batter

Add the flour and coconut and beat, do not over beat the batter. Using a spatula gently fold in blueberries. Be carseful to not break them as you will get a blue banana bread. Top the bread with the sliced banana and sprinkle the top with the sugar. This will result in a perfect crust.

Add your mixture to your baking tin and bake for 1 hour.

Allow cooling on your cooling rack in the tin for 15 minutes and then let it cool further out of the tin.

-Melissa

This blog post is sponsored by Country Road. All homeware can be shopped here.
 

banana bread

There is something so deeply nostalgic for me about banana bread. The minute I smell it, it takes me back to warm memories of my childhood, my grand parents and school lunch boxes.

I remember eating it in the holidays at my grandparent’s house after digging in the garden for worms with my grandfather. A great cup of sweet tea and loads of butter always accompanied it. Shortly afterwards we would go fishing with the worms we caught in his strawberry patch.

I was never short of a sandwich trade when ever I opened my lunch box and the wonderfully sweet smell of the banana bread would float out and kiss the noses of my friends. They would all lunge at the opportunity of grabbing a bite or a trade!

This banana bread is great because I have kicked it up a notch with a rich cream cheese frosting, which is silky smooth. You can always leave it off and just have it with butter. Plain or not this banana bread is quick to make and stays beautifully in the fridge for any occasion.


Serves: 6

Ingredients:

•   3 ripe bananas, smashed - don't have ripe bananas? Put them in the oven at 100 degree Celsius for 30 minutes

•   1/3 cup melted butter

•   3/4 cup sugar

•   1 egg, beaten

•   1 teaspoon vanilla extract

•   1 teaspoon baking soda

•   Pinch of salt

•   1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

•   1/2 cup pecan nuts, chopped

•   1/4 cup desiccated coconut

•   250g cream cheese

•   1 tsp. vanilla extract

•   1/3 cup icing sugar

•   1 Tbsp. lemon juice

Pecan nuts for decoration


instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180°c

Grease your bread loaf tin a 4x8 inch or 10 x 20cm

In a large bowl using an electronic mixer mix the butter and the mashed bananas.

Next mix in the sugar, egg and vanilla.

Next add the baking soda and salt and mix it into the batter

Add the flour to the batter and mix it in, careful to not over beat the batter.

Lastly add in the pecan nuts and coconut. Mix again just until all the ingredients are evenly combined.

Add your mixture to your baking tin and bake for 1 hour.

Allow to cool on your cooling rack in the tin for 15 minutes and then let it cool further out of the tin.

Now lets get started with the cream cheese frosting:

Sieve your icing sugar into your mixing bowl.

Add all the remaining ingredients and mix. Do not over mix the cream cheese or it will go too soft.

Ice your banana bread and top with pecan nuts for decoration.

Enjoy!

-Melissa