Picking one favorite cake is possibly something of an impossible mission, but having a list of all favorite cakes - now that is perfectly feasible. On mine, you will find: fudgy brownies, good cheesecake, that tiny lemon lemon tart eaten in Nice, my grandmother's walnut layer cake, and, of course, banana bread.
Banana bread is the only cake my mom makes voluntarily. It's that easy. You also get to use those super ripe bananas which would otherwise land in trash (why those bananas are, in fact, better than just-ripe bananas was already explained here). Your kitchen will smell amazing for hours, as caramelizing bananas are one of the most home-y fragrances and adding brown sugar improves things - exponentially. You can really play around with flours, especially those of whole grain originis, because this baked good is supposed to be heavy and crumbly. Mashed bananas ensure the loaf doesn't fall apart even if you go crazy with the add-ins.
Like I did here: there is a bar of chocolate, half a cup of chopped pecans, vanilla extract, super dark muscovado sugar, some ground almonds for extra moistness. The loaf tastes great hot, straight out of the oven, the chocolate still melted, but slicing it so fresh is quite horrible and makes for a huge mess. Left to cool down overnight, wrapped in a piece of parchment, will soften and cutting even, smooth pieces will not be a problem. I dare you to make it last for more than a day - if you do (ah, my hero) try toasting the slices then having with some jam or nut butter.
Super Rich Banana Bread
(makes one 24cm loaf, about 12 servings)
3 tbsp chia or flax seeds
+ 1/2 cup hot water
4 large, extra ripe bananas
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oat flour*
1/4 cup ground almonds
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup dark muscovado sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 bar (100g) dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup chopped pecans
*note: to make oat flour, you can grind oats in your blender first thing, before the chia/flax, and sift before adding to the batter.
Preheat your oven to 350*C. Line your loaf pan with baking parchment. Set aside.
In your blender, first grind the seeds, place in a small bowl and cover with the measured hot water. Set aside for 10 minutes.
Next, add the bananas and blend until no longer solid - but don't do this for too long, you don't want them to become a smoothie. Add all the other ingredients except for chocolate and pecans. Add the chia/flax egg and blend for 1 minute, stopping to scrape if necessary.
Lastly, with the blender off, add the chocolate and pecans, and use a spatula to stir them in. Transfer to your tin.
Bake for 60 - 75 minutes. Do the toothpick test; it should come out clean after poking the cake in the middle.
Can be eaten right away, but will be good for 5 days. For more information, look up to the post.