Banana Bread

So it’s been way longer than planned for a new post on here! Time has absolutely flown by, but I have a bloody good banana bread recipe to make up for my absence!

This bread is quite dense, super moist and incredibly moreish! It should last for days, but so far I’ve been unable to test that as it’s always been scoffed within a day!

I was really surprised to discover that banana bread isn’t a traditional English sweet treat, but actually comes from our friends across the pond. There are two schools of thought on its origin, the first is that the recipe came out of the Great Depression as a way to make use of overripe bananas, the other is that it was developed to promote the sale of baking powder…I prefer the former as the latter just sounds so cold and corporate!

Banana Bread Gif

Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 150g Butter (+ extra for greasing)
  • 150g Sugar
  • 150g Self Raising Flour
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 2 Ripe Bananas (not overripe!)
  • 2tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1tsp Baking Powder

Instructions

  1. Turn the oven to 180ºC (160ºC Fan)
  2. Take your 2lb loaf tin and grease thorougly with butter. It's much better to grease the tin than use greaseproof paper as you get a better 'crust' on your banana bread!
  3. Pop the butter and sugar into a bowl and cream together.
  4. Add the eggs and stir in gently.
  5. Mix the flour in bit by bit - I tend to do it in 3 batches.
  6. Add in the vanilla and baking powder and mix thoroughly.
  7. To finish your mixture add in the chopped bananas and mix until smooth.
  8. Pour mixture into the loaf tin and bake in the oven for 50mins.
  9. Test that the knife comes out the bread clean then leave to cool.
  10. Remove from tin and serve in slices. Goes perfectly with a good up of tea!
Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
http://teaatmidnight.com/banana-bread/

Hope you find this recipe a-peel-ing!

Zoe x

Chocolate Cointreau Cupcakes

Hello! I wasn’t planning on doing two cupcake recipes in a row but these were just too tasty for me to delay posting! Whilst the lime & pistachio cupcakes had quite a light and sophisticated flavour these are all about pure chocolatey boozy indulgence…perfect for the run up to Christmas!

Unfortunately this won’t be a picture heavy post as my camera died when I was photographing them at 11.30 on a Thursday night and I had to take them to work the next morning (couldn’t/shouldn’t eat 12 of these by myself!). So please forgive the lack of photos but hopefully the ones that I did manage to take illustrate just how scrumptious these are!

cointreau cupcakes

These went down pretty darn well at work if I may say so myself! I based these on the flavour of a Terry’s Chocolate Orange but decided to give the a grown up spin as I’ll always add alcohol to my baking where possible! These have a dark chocolate sponge with a generous slosh of Cointreau to get that chocolate orange flavour, topped with a Cointreau buttercream and a Terry’s Chocolate Orange piece – yum!

Now I’ve teased you enough…time for the recipe!

Chocolate Cointreau Cupcakes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Chocolate Cointreau Cupcakes

Ingredients

    For the cakes
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 90g cocoa powder
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 2 shots of Cointreau
    For the icing
  • 200g icing sugar
  • 115g unsalted butter
  • 1.5 shots of Cointreau
  • Orange food colouring (I use Neon Orange Gel Food Colouring from Dr Oetker)
  • Terry's Chocolate Orange Minis
  • Optional - Dr Oetker Gold Shimmer Spray

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC fan (180ºC conventional)
  2. Starting with the sponge mix, cream together the sugar and butter in a bowl. Once the mixture is smooth stir in the eggs.
  3. Sieve in the cocoa powder and flour and stir until it's all mixed in.
  4. Add in the Cointreau shots make sure it's mixed through.
  5. Grab your cupcake tray and fill 12 holes with cases.
  6. Spoon your mixture evenly into the 12 cases and pop in the oven for 20mins
  7. Take your cupcakes out the oven and make sure they're cooked through (spike with a knife or cocktail stick and make sure it comes out clean) then leave to cool.
  8. Icing time! Pop your butter in a bowl and slowly add in the icing sugar stirring constantly. Once all that's combined add the whole tube of food colouring and stir stir stir!
  9. Add your icing to an icing bag and decorate your cakes (they must be room temp before you do this!)
  10. Optional step - give each cupcake a spray with the shimmer spray for a golden shine.
  11. Add a Terry's Chocolate Orange Mini to each cupcake.
  12. Step back and admire your beautiful cupcakes!
Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
http://teaatmidnight.com/chocolate-cointreau-cupcakes/

Enjoy!

Zoe

Marmite Spaghetti (for true Marmite addicts)

Now before you say anything I know that to be adding Marmite to you spaghetti you have to be pretty darn fond of the stuff, but I find that other recipes tend to only give a hint where as mine packs more of a Marmite-y punch!

This is a super quick and incredibly purse friendly dinner that’s so filling and comforting – perfect for these autumnal nights where you get home and it’s already dark.

So here is my version, amping up the marmite and reducing the butter…does that mean we can also say it’s a healthier version? Maaaaaybe…?

marmite-spaghetti-1
It’s quite hard to make a bowl of beige look as good as it tastes!

What you need
serves 1
1 serving of spaghetti (I’ll let you be the judge of that)
1 generous teaspoon Marmite
1 teaspoon Butter
Boiling water with a sprinkle of salt
Grated cheese to sprinkle on top (cheddar is perfect)

2 saucepans

Method

  1. Get the pasta boiling in one of your pans.
  2. While that’s bubbling away add the marmite and butter into your other saucepan and melt over a low heat and stir regularly.
  3. When the pasta is cooked to your liking save about 200ml of the pasta water in a mug.
  4. Strain the pasta and pop it back in the pan.
  5. Add the water to your buttery marmite concoction and give it a good stir.
  6. Pour the sauce into your pasta pan and stir it through so it all gets a good coating.
  7. Throw it all in a bowl and add as much cheese as you please!

Yum!

marmite-spag
Alllll the cheese
marmite-spag-close-up
ahhh yeah!

If you want to print this recipe out, use the easy to print version below 🙂

Zoe

Marmite Spaghetti (for true Marmite addicts)

Marmite Spaghetti (for true Marmite addicts)

Ingredients

  • 1 serving of spaghetti (I'll let you be the judge of that)
  • 1 generous teaspoon Marmite
  • 1 teaspoon Butter
  • Boiling water with a sprinkle of salt
  • Grated cheese to sprinkle on top (cheddar is perfect)

Instructions

  1. Get the pasta boiling in one of your pans.
  2. While that's bubbling away add the marmite and butter into your other saucepan and melt over a low heat and stir regularly.
  3. When the pasta is cooked to your liking save about 200ml of the pasta water in a mug.
  4. Strain the pasta and pop it back in the pan.
  5. Add the water to your buttery marmite concoction and give it a good stir.
  6. Pour the sauce into your pasta pan and stir it through so it all gets a good coating.
  7. Throw it all in a bowl and add as much cheese as you please!
Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
http://teaatmidnight.com/marmite-spaghetti-for-true-marmite-addicts/

Ultimate Gingerbread

Way back in 1854 a very clever woman called Sarah Nelson invented the BEST gingerbread in the world…and this is by no means an exaggeration! The recipe has been a closely guarded secret by the family ever since and their shop in Grasmere always has a queue out the door!

I first discovered this gingerbread at university, and since then have lusted over this gingery goodness, so when I discovered a recipe for it in an old cookery book that Granny gave me I was over the moon! This recipe isn’t the secret Grasmere recipe but it’s as close as I’ve managed to get making it myself. I find it comes out softer than the original but I actually prefer it a bit on the gooey side!

I’ve made a couple of changes from the recipe from the book (mostly due to what was in my cupboard at the time of making) so without further ado…

What you’ll need…
4.5oz (128g) wholemeal bread flour
4.5oz (128g) dark muscovado sugar
4.5oz (128g) unsalted butter
1.5oz (43g) oats
1 1/2 heaped teaspoons powdered ginger
3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/3 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

20cm x 22cm dish
large bowl
greaseproof paper
wooden spoon

Method

Preheat the oven to 160ºc fan (180ºc conventional)

In a large bowl put in the flour, oats, ginger, cream of tartar and bicarbonate of soda and give them a quick mix. Then add the butter in chunks and either rub with your hands or combine with your mixture until you have a breadcrumb texture.

gingerbread mixing

Line your dish with greaseproof paper and spoon the mixture in. Grab a wooden spoon and use the back of it to flatten the mixture down and into the corners.

gingerbread before oven

Pop in the oven and leave for 25mins (30mins if you want it to be harder and more like the original Grasmere version)

Take out the oven and cut whilst warm.

gingerbread cut up

Leave to cool and enjoy with a nice up of tea!

gingerbread on plate 1

gingerbread on plate 2

I hope you enjoy the recipe, I’ve added a printable version below 🙂

Zoe

Ultimate Gingerbread

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 16 pieces

Ultimate Gingerbread

Ingredients

  • 4.5oz (128g) wholemeal bread flour
  • 4.5oz (128g) dark muscovado sugar
  • 4.5oz (128g) unsalted butter
  • 1.5oz (43g) oats
  • 1 1/2 heaped teaspoons powdered ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1/3 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºc fan (180ºc conventional)
  2. In a large bowl put in the flour, oats, ginger, cream of tartar and bicarbonate of soda and give them a quick mix. Then add the butter in chunks and either rub with your hands or combine with your mixture until you have a breadcrumb texture.
  3. Line your 20cm x 22cm dish with greaseproof paper and spoon the mixture in. Grab a wooden spoon and use the back of it to flatten the mixture down and into the corners.
  4. Pop in the oven and leave for 25mins (30mins if you want it to be harder and more like the original Grasmere version)
  5. Take out the oven and cut whilst warm.
  6. Leave to cool and enjoy with a nice up of tea!
Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
http://teaatmidnight.com/ultimate-gingerbread/