I can hardly believe my stay in Dubai is coming to an end. I’ll be flying back to Germany tomorrow and just thinking of the cold there makes me shiver. But the 22 – 26 degrees C we’re enjoying here has warmed us up right to the core. Wonders what sunshine does to the soul and mind.
We’re feeling full of life. Not sure if it really is the sun or the shopping or the family or the food or the friends – maybe a bit of all.
Those following me on Twitter and Facebook are keeping up with my busy schedule and a few pictures I’ve been sharing with you. Yes – I have done a bit of shopping but really what’s totally spectacular is the fact that I am having fun meeting friends. I had the pleasure of meeting fellow blogger Komal from Lifealicious and my dear friend (and macaron tester) BS. from Weimar is here spending a few days in Dubai and we’ve been having fun on the beach and exploring the spice souk. However, what I’ve really cherished was meeting my old school friend T.A. T. is the younger sister of my bestest friend N. from our old Doha College days. It’s been almost 20 years! And this week we met again – two gals in their mid thirties chatting like we never missed a day, T. texting and sending pictures to N. in Lebanon. N. we missed you!
Another pretty interesting experience I had was enjoying an evening at my mum’s “kitty party”. Do you know the concept of kitty parties? Well it’s very Asian – Indian more particularly, where ladies get together once a month to enjoy a evening of chit chat, gossip, games and food. Each lady puts a specific amount in a so called “kitty,” which is collected and part of it is paid towards the hotel/restaurant bill. Each month a hostess is chosen and she is responsible to set up the party. So, let’s say I had an interesting evening listening to talk about who’s got the biggest diamonds, the newest daughter-in-law or who’s son/son-in-law has the highest paying job.
Well I do not know about all that – I do know who’s got the richest and best tasting chocolate banana bread around here though – ME!
In three different varieties – au naturel, topped with gorgeous crunchy pistachios and with lovely pink almond praline (courtesy Pam).
One afternoon Jamie and I got together in our kitchens via Skype and decided to bake together. These kind of cakes, loaves and breads are a vital part of my baking repertoire on the weekends as both Soeren and Tom enjoy taking a piece or two with them. Another one of those “hit and run” dishes – you know – I have told you about them before – hit on them and then run! I usually make them in loaf pans as they are easy to store and handle. The recipe below makes about 3 small loaf pans.
The richness and smoothness comes not only from silky chocolate but also a good sprinkling of cocoa powder. It’s kept moist and tender with the addition of ripe bananas. Together they make an unbeatable pair in giving a deep and rich flavor to the cake/bread.
Rich Chocolate Banana Breads with Pistachios, Pink Praline and Au Naturel
Printable version of recipe here
100g bittersweet chocolate,
150g butter, softened
170g Muscovado sugar
175g all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
25g cocoa powder
2 large bananas, ripe and mashed
Pistachios, coarsely chopped
Pink almond praline
- Heat oven to 180 degrees C. Butter and line 3 small loaf pans with baking paper and set aside.
- Melt chocolate in a double boiler or in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water.
- Cream butter and sugar until creamy, fluffy and pale. Gradually add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition.
- Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa powder and fold into the the wet ingredients using a spatula.
- Add mashed bananas and melted chocolate and fold well.
- Divide mixture between the three pans, top one with pistachios, the other with the pink almond praline and leave one plain. Bake for about 30-45 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool on a rack, then wrap in baking paper or foil.
- The loaves will stay fresh and really moist for 3 to 4 days kept in an airtight container.
- Make double the recipe and freeze the loaves. If you cut them in slices before freezing you can easily take individual slices out a few hours prior to eating.
These are probably not going to last too long so I really recommend making a double portion. Why not? They freeze so well and will be devoured in no time. It’s simply irresistible and moist and ohhh so chocolaty. I love the flavor or bananas in cakes and loaves, together with deep chocolate the loaf takes on a wonderful new dimension.
Jamie is hosting this month’s Monthly Mingle and has chosen Bread & Chocolate as her theme. A fantastic pairing I think and here is my offering! Make sure you join us you still have a few days so pop over to Jamie’s lovely blog and check out all the details!
It’s hard to leave such gorgeous weather behind. But looking forward to seeing Tom again and spending a nice Valentine’s with him – mmmmm! ;o)
Come back next week and I’ll take you on a high flying trip to Dubai in pictures with me. Have a good one!
You might like these Valentine Day treats from WFLH:
|Hazelnut Nougat Truffles||Panna Cotta - Chocolate with Caramelized Pineapple and Amarena Cherries||Matcha White Chocolate Pralines with Pistachios|
All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2010 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First