This is the one that most people ask me about. It’s gooey, rich and full of flavour. I started off with this Nigel Slater recipe and decided I could make it better…
A ginger cake is good, a double ginger cake is better, but a triple ginger cake is fantastic. It can be served warm or cold and fits just as well with tea on a summer afternoon as with an autumn evening by the fire. And it doesn’t need icing.
Chocolate Banana Cake
I adapted this recipe from one I learnt in primary school. I decided to combine it with a caramel sauce and there are some optional extras you can add in if you want to.
For the cake
• 250g/9oz plain flour
• 25g/1oz cocoa powder
• 1tsp baking powder
• ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
• Pinch of salt
• 200g/7oz golden caster sugar
• 2 or 3 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed (if you like a very banana flavour add the third, otherwise stick to two)
• 2 eggs, beaten
• 125g/4 ½ oz butter, melted
• 1 tsp cinnamon powder
• 75g milk chocolate chips.
For the caramel sauce
• 250g caster sugar
• 142ml double cream
• 50g butter
• 2tbsp water
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C, grease and line a loaf tin.
2. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, sugar and cinnamon, if using, into a large bowl. Stir until well combined.
3. Mash the bananas in a separate bowl, stir in the beaten egg and melted butter.
4. Fold the bananas into the flour mixture until just combined. Spoon into a loaf tin.
5. Bake for 50-60 mins or until the cake is risen and a skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 mins.
6. Whilst the cake is baking begin to make the caramel. Tip the sugar into a heavy based pan, stir in the water and place over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.
7. Turn up the heat and bubble for 4-5 mins until you have a caramel.
8. Remove from the heat, carefully stir in the cream and butter until you have a smooth sauce.
9. When the cake has cooled, pour the caramel sauce over the cake, serve warm.
Ok, so technically I was never in the W.I., although I did intend on joining.
When I lived in Newcastle and broke up with my boyfriend I was sharing a one bedroom flat in a former convent with him and he was an alcoholic. He was sleeping in the sitting room, I had the bedroom. I didn’t feel like I could have friends round, as there was nowhere for them to sit and I didn’t want them to see him in that state. Neither did I want to deal with the hours of talking that would inevitably follow over many, many days if someone came in and had upset his personal space. We lived like this for 6 months before he moved out.
I had to find things to do to occupy my time. working shifts as a careers adviser I couldn’t really commit to regular classes or activities in the evenings, unless you count the night shift activities of ‘Sing the lyrics of one song to the tune of another’ or ‘Read out song lyrics in a sort of Radio 4 voice for other people to guess’ or, my personal favourite, ‘How long can I try to talk like Reeves and Mortimer being Geordie Otis Reading and Marvin Gaye sitting on the dock of the bay before I begin to sound like Sarah Milllican?’. They don’t really count as activities. Fun, yes, getting me out of the house for something other than work, not so much.