Thursday, January 23, 2014

BANANA BREAD AND THE YELLOW POLICEMAN

My sister Carro (aka Bee) on a recent baking mission. She is the ultimate in authentic retro. Bless her…      UHG
This recipe comes from the very heart of Banana Land, from someone who has bananas in their blood. This I know because he happens to be stark raving bananas. His name is Greg, aka Gregorius: he is my brother in-law. Ever since I have known Gregorius, he has always had a few banana trees in his garden.

A good banana tree will produce about 400 bananas, so that surely means Gregorius must know an awful lot about dealing with piles of bananas. What better recipe to follow than his one, passed down from his late father Nevil.
Those mushy brown bananas that have passed their best are the perfect ones to use. This recipe requires no baking powder, which I think is rather clever.

Bananas for a double batch & the 50 year old beater  UHG

WHEN TO PICK A BUNCH
Gregorius says:
“Things grown in your garden at home have nothing to do with yellow being ripe. If you waited for a paw paw / papaya [he has got plenty of these trees in his garden too] to be completely yellow before you picked it, you would find it to be virtually vrot [rotten]. That is, if the birds haven’t beaten you to it, because a bird knows a thing or two about ripeness. A slightly yellow paw paw is the perfect breakfast one. Likewise a bunch of bananas: there are a gazillion [400] bananas in a good bunch, so you want to chop them off at exactly the right time. How do you know when is the right time?
The ‘policeman’ comes to tell you. From the time the sharp edges of the bananas start to round you must cast a beady eye over them every day, until - lo and behold - one banana of the bunch turns yellow. That is the ‘policeman’ telling you to start greasing your bread tins.”

A retro way of 'chopping' nuts                                    UHG

    WHAT YOU NEED
    125g        butter
    225g        caster sugar
    2              large eggs
    25ml        yogurt / sour milk
    1tsp         vanilla essence
    6              ripe bananas
    50g          chopped nuts
    250g        flour (sifted)
    1tsp          bicarbonate of soda
    1 pinch     salt





WHAT TO DO
Cream together the butter, caster sugar, eggs, yoghurt/sour milk and vanilla essence. Fold in mashed bananas and chopped nuts. Fold in flour, bi-carb and salt. Spoon into a well-greased baking tin and bake for 45 mins at 180 degrees C, or until a knife comes out clean when pressed into the loaf. A fine cup of tea is the perfect accompaniment.

Gregorius & Carro                     UHG

Banana smashing                     UHG
In goes the sour milk (Amasi) UHG
Left over cherries made it into the mix UHG  




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