Chocolate & Banana Loaf cake

Here’s a wonderfully rich cake with a luscious topping. It’s simple, easy and quick to make, but it still impresses.

Serves: 10 – 12

Time: 1 hour 45 + cooling time

Difficulty: Easy

Credit: The original recipe was on the BBC good Food website. I’ve made a few small changes and added some tips.

Ingredients

    For the cake
  • 100ml/3.5oz sunflower oil (plus extra if you need to grease a loaf tin. * see note below)
  • 175g/6oz caster sugar
  • 175g/6oz self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 4 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 100g/3.5oz chocolate chips or small pieces
  • Around 175g/6oz very ripe bananas (* see second help note)
  • 3 medium eggs (2 separated)
  • 50ml/1.75fl oz milk
  • For the topping
  • 50g/1.75oz milk chocolate
  • 100g/3.5oz butter, softened
  • 200g icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp milk (at room temperature)
*1 You will need a 900g/2lb loaf tin, but rather than greasing it I recommend simply inserting a pre-shaped paper liner. See photo below.
*2 You can soften bananas in the micro wave. Use a fork to stab some holes along the sides then give them a few 15 – 20 second blasts until softened. Take care when peeling them as they’ll be hot inside.

Directions

  1. Heat the oven to 160C/Fan 140C/325F/Gas 3. Grease and line the loaf tin or insert a paper liner.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, bicarb, cocoa and chocolate.
  3. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas and stir in one whole egg plus two yolks, followed by the oil and milk.
  4. In a very clean glass or metal bowl, whisk the two egg whites until stiff.
  5. Stir the banana/egg mixture into the dry ingredients, then stir in a quarter of the egg whites to loosen the mixture. Next, gently fold in the rest of the egg whites.
  6. Gently spoon the mixture into the tin and bake for around 70 – 75 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
  7. Cool in the tin.
  8. For the topping, melt the chocolate either in a bain marie or carefully in the microwave, stirring well between blasts.
  9. Beat the butter for a few minutes then sift in the icing sugar and beat further. Sift in the cocoa powder and beat a little longer before adding the melted chocolate, a pinch of salt and the milk. Mix again until smooth.
  10. Swirl or “blob” it onto the cooled cake and smooth it out if desired. You could then make a pattern using a fork or any suitable item. Add sprinkles of choice.