Yesterday, after coming back home with the kids from their school, I promptly turned on the telly. Very unusual, remarked the li’l ones. But, it was a special occasion, after all…history was being made. I, along with millions of others, waited to watch Obama sworn in. We had been following the election quite closely and, Rengoni, in particular, shows quite a keen interest in all that has been going on. So, the three of us (Dinesh, being at work), huddled together to watch the momentous occasion. Of course, Agastya could not keep still for very long and kept wondering as to why did the people have to talk for so long. Rengoni was more taken back by the fact that the Obama family did not come out together…”But, they belong to the same family…so why can’t they come out together?” The li’l lady watched the entire ceremony without blinking an eye and without reaching for a book to read, which is quite unusual…Obama magic ?!! Well, I certainly wish him all the best…he’ll have to bear quite a heavy burden, living up to the high hopes the people have placed on his shoulders, and that, too, in these uncertain times.
Coming back to the kitchen, and more precisely the oven, I baked a coffee-banana cake today.
Coffee and me are not the best of friends; in fact, I don’t ever drink it. So, it was really unusual for me. But, I really wanted to try out the flavour and Dinesh doesn’t mind it, so I would have at least one taker I kept it quite basic, using simple ingredients. The cake baked beautifully, and I decided to dress it up further with a thick layer of coffee flavoured cream cheese filling.
This is how I made it-
4 and 1/2 tblsp of dark muscovado sugar ( or other dark brown sugar)
1 ripe banana, roughly mashed
5 tblsp of sunflower/vegetable oil
1/2 C of whole wheat flour (atta)
1 and 1/4 tsp baking powder
3 tblsp of espresso coffee
For the filling/topping-
375 gms of quark ( which is virtually fat free soft cheese) or other cream cheese
3 tsp of espresso coffee
4 tblsp of honey
Icing sugar to dust on top of the cake
- Pre heat the oven at 180 deg C. Line an 8 inch round pan with foil and grease it.
- Beat together the eggs, sugar and banana for about 7-8 minutes or till the mixture is light an fluffy.
- Add the oil and beat for 2 more minutes.
- Sieve together the flour, coffee and baking powder ( three times).
- Gradually fold in the flour mixture to the egg mixture, a tblsp at a time, preferably, with a rubber spatula.
- Tip in the mixture into the prepared pan. Tap the pan against the counter to expel air bubbles.
- Place the pan in the centre of the preheated oven and bake for about 17 -19 minutes or till a skewer inserted through the centre of the cake comes out clean.
- While the cake bakes, mix together the quark/other cream cheese and the honey and coffee. Leave it aside for the flavours to develop, and to use later.
- Transfer the cake to a rack and cool completely.
- Slice the cake, horizontally, into half . Cover one half with the cheese mixture, and place the other half on top. Dust the top with icing sugar.
The cake had a nice crumb. Dinesh did like it and I gave it a try too.
The cake smelt nice, and the cream cheese did add to the taste. Hmm, not bad, but next time, I would probably reduce the coffee a bit…I thought the flavour was a bit strong. But if you like your coffee strong, then this is the cake for you.
Dinesh and myself are enjoying a piece right now,and we both feel that it tastes even better the next day, and the flavour somehow mellows a bit, and didn’t feel that strong. So, if you have any leftovers, keep it in the fridge and enjoy the next day. Or, even better, make the cake, chill overnight and enjoy the next day