There’s only one thing to do with bananas this old. Mash ’em up and stick ’em in a cake!
Makes 16-20 cupcakes
3 old bananas, mashed
170g self-raising flour
100g brown sugar
100g plain chocolate, roughly chopped
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp vanilla essence
Preheat the oven to 180oC/350oF/gas mark 4. In a bowl, mash up your manky bananas and whisk in the ginger, cinnamon and vanilla essence with a fork. Roughly chop the chocolate into choc-chip size chunks.
In a mixing bowl sift the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Crack the eggs into a cup and whisk with a fork, before adding to the dry ingredients. Chop up the butter, add, and whisk the whole lot with an electric whisk for a few minutes, slow to start with so you don’t send powder everywhere! Fold in your banana mixture and chopped chocolate. Set up some pretty cupcake cases in a mufin tray. Fill the cases (remember, they must be pretty or else!) three quarters full and slam/gently place in the oven for an hour, turning/checking half-way through. If you can’t be bothered with buttercream then sprinkle a little granulated sugar on the top of each to give a nice, crispy top. If you can be bothered with the buttercream then follow the stages below!
140g butter, chopped (+ one extra teaspoon)
300g icing sugar
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp cinnamon
Roughly crush the pecans with your hands. Heat the teaspoon of butter in a frying pan on a low heat and when fully melted (don’t let it burn!) add the pecans, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Toast, still on a low heat and constantly stirring, for a couple of minutes until the sugar begins to melt. You don’t want the sugar to melt too much, as it will form puddles of rock-hard caramel. Whizz the lot in a blender until a sandy texture is formed.
Add the rest of the butter, icing sugar and vanilla extract to a bowl. (I stick my butter in the airing cupboard for five minutes to get it to melt a little bit). Cream the lot with a wooden spoon until the mixture goes pale. Add the chopped pecans and beat a little further.
Only top your cakes with buttercream once they have cooled – otherwise the butter in the buttercream will melt and the cakes will be ruined (*gasp*). I used a squeezy icing…thing…but spooning on would work equally as well, I’m sure! I imagine this buttercream would also work with walnuts so don’t feel restricted to pecans!