Sunday, 23 January 2011

Frosted Banana Bars

these bars are sort of pimped-up banana bread, but hey, i'm not complaining! i got a new cookbook - the Hamlyn 200 Cakes and Bakes, i got it for about 50p cause i had a gift card :) only costs £5 anyway, a good investment me thinks. i found this recipe in the tray bakes section, but i think it deserves to be in the cakes section or the little cakes bit! apologies for some of the slightly shoddy photos, my mum was rushing me out of the kitchen so she could make lunch!
one thing i've forgotten from this photo is the baking powder (this has happened twice now, i really need to check things before i photograph them) the recipe calls for two 175g bananas, i ended up using four small bananas, and now i think about it, a banana that weighs 175g would be MASSIVE. make sure you use ripe bananas - not only will they make mushing them up easier, but they'll sweeten the cake as well.
now, the recipe says to add alternate spoons of egg and flour. i would strongly recommend using a mixer/electric whisk for this. i thought 'ohh, i'll get some exercise and do it by hand' - you won't believe how much my arm ached after this. i actually had to sit down and have a cup of tea before i carried on. i must have mixed for about 15 minutes, gradually adding flour and egg, so, when i make this again, i'll use a mixer FOR SURE.
the frosting was A MENACE. i'm not even kidding - one moment it was really dry and powdery, the next minute it was thick and gloopy and bubbling, so i poured it onto the cake, and it immediatly began to set so fast that it was hard to take out of the pan, most of the sprinkles didn't stick and it just caught me out, to say the least.

175g butter
175g caster sugar
3 eggs, beaten
250g self raising flour
1tsp baking powder
2 bananas each about 175g, mashed
50g butter (for frosting)
25g cocoa powder
250g icing sugar
1-2 tbsp milk

cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
add alternate spoonfuls of egg and flour, until its all mixed in.
mix in the bananas and baking powder until just combined.
pour into a greased square or rectangle pan and spread evenly.
bake at 180 degrees for about 30 minutes, until a skewer pushed into the centre comes out clean.
tip out of the pan and leave to cool on a rack (if it has risen in the middle, i chose to cut it to level it off, so the frosting sits better and its easier to cut up fairly)
melt the butter in a pan and add the cocoa, cook for 1 minutes, stirring continually.
take off the heat, add the icing sugar and milk, return to the heat.
stir until thick and spreadable, adding more milk/icing sugar when needed.
spread over the cake and QUICK run and get the sprinkles and sprinkle them over.
cut into squares/rectangles, i got about 12.
eat with a cup of tea, after a long day of mixing things.

adios amigos,

sarahhh xx

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