Sunday, 10 March 2013

Sunday Afternoon Tea Bakes - Banana & Pecan Loaf

Welcome to 'Sunday Afternoon Tea Bakes' a new blog series where every Sunday I will be sharing a recipe for a delicious cake.
All the recipes will be simple and easy so everyone can give them a go.
 I will mostly be making them the old fashioned way, by hand,  to show that you don't need fancy expensive electrical equipment to produce a good tasty cake!
Banana & Pecan Loaf
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
Prepare a 900g/2lb Loaf Tin ~ ( a 900g loaf tin will hold 1.5 litres of water if you're not sure what size yours is!)
Grease well with butter - you can line as well if your tin isn't non stick or if your non stick isn't that good. 
Measure out the following Ingredients
100g Butter - at room temperature
2 eggs
200g Golden Caster Sugar
250g Plain Flour
80ml Milk
1tsp Lemon Juice ~ fresh is best
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
3 Ripe Bananas ~ well mashed
1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
Handful of Pecan Nuts - roughly chopped
For Cream Cheese Topping ~
50g Butter at room temperature
85g Cream Cheese ( I prefer Philadelphia)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
50g Icing Sugar
Beat the sugar & butter together using a wooden spoon until fluffy.
Next add the eggs one at a time, beating in each egg very well, with the second egg add a tablespoon full of flour to prevent it curdling.
Mix the milk, lemon juice in a cup and add to the mixture along with the mashed bananas and vanilla extract ~ mix everything together.
Sift the plain flour and bicarbonate of soda into the mixture and then fold in thoroughly until everything is combined.

Pour the mixture into your prepared loaf tin making sure it is spread out evenly.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 1hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
I would start checking with the skewer at around 50 minutes or so as everyones ovens are different.
Today my cake took 65 minutes to cook through.
Leave the tin to cool off for a few minutes then turn out the cake onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
While you are waiting for the cake to cool prepare the cream cheese topping.
Beat the butter with a wooden spoon until smooth then add the cream cheese and vanilla extract and mix well.
Sift in the icing sugar and beat well until it is fully combined and fluffy.
My kitchen was quite warm today so the topping was quite runny, if this happens I just put it into the fridge for a few minutes to firm it up otherwise it will be too runny to stick to the top of your cake.
My topping was still a tad runny but I like the 'home made' look it gives the cake.
Once the cake is cool spread the topping over it using a spatula and sprinkle over the pecans as you wish to decorate.
 The topping is optional and if you want to cut down on a few calories the cake is still delicious without it!
It will keep quite happily for 4 or 5 days in a air tight tin - if it lasts that long!

This is such a lovely moist cake and is really 'bananary' - perfect to enjoy with a good cup of tea anytime of day!
I hope you've enjoyed this new element to the blog!
If you have any suggestions of cakes you'd like to see me make then let me know!
You are welcome to leave your comments & blog links below,
See you all next Sunday!
Jenny xx