Choose between an indulgent and fudgy pudding or slices of moist and fragrant banana bread with Nigella Lawson’s transformative recipe. With only chocolate, tahini, banana and other basic baking ingredients, you can whip up these chocolatey and homely desserts with just the right amount of sweetness. Versatile, and oh-so-yummy.
This recipe is featured in Nigella Lawson’s new BBC show which focuses on her favourite recipes for home-cooking. Nigella’s Eat, Cook, Repeat, premieres in Singapore on Monday, 16th August at 7.00pm, on StarHub channel 432 and BBC Player.
- 250 g (approx. 2 medium) very ripe or overripe bananas
- 60 ml olive or vegetable oil
- 50 g tahini, at room temperature
- 50 g full-fat Greek yoghurt, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 50 g caster sugar
- 50 g soft dark brown sugar for the pud; &
- 35 g for the bread
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 60 g plain flour (or gluten-free flour)
- 25 g cocoa
- ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- 100 g dark chocolate chips
- 1½ tsps sesame seeds to sprinkle on top (only for the bread)
Heat the oven to 170 C (150 C fan-forced) if you’re making banana bread, or 180 C (160 C fan-forced) for the pudding. Put a paper liner into a 1 lb (450 g) loaf tin or, for the pudding, get out an ovenproof dish with a capacity of about 750 ml.
Peel the bananas and, either by hand or using an electric mixer, mash the bananas, then beat in the oil. I use an American ¼ cup (60 ml) measure to do this, and then fill it up with tahini (conveniently, 60 ml of tahini weighs 50 g) and beat that in. If you’re making the pudding, beat in the yoghurt (you can also fill the ¼ cup measure with it to get 50 g). Whether you’re making the pudding or the bread, now’s the time to beat in the egg, then the sugars and vanilla.
Whisk or fork together the flour, cocoa, bicarb and salt and slowly beat into the batter and when you can no longer see any specks of white, fold in the chocolate chips with a bendy spatula, which you will need to scrape the runny batter into either loaf tin or ovenproof dish. If it’s banana bread you’re making, sprinkle over the sesame seeds.
First, instructions for the bread: cook for 45-50 mins until risen and firm to the touch, or until a cake tester comes out almost clean; some chocolate chips will make it a little sticky in parts. And don’t worry about the cracks on the top; that is part of its deal, as it is for the pudding. Let it cool completely in its tin on a wire rack and–if you can bear to wait–once it’s cold, slip it out of the tin and wrap it in baking parchment, then foil, and leave it for a day before slicing and eating. I understand if this is too much to ask; I confess I don’t always manage to wait
And now for the pudding-cake: cook for 40-45 mins, depending on whether you want it to have a gooily molten centre or not. Once it’s out of the oven, let it stand for 5-10 mins before diving in for that first squidgy spoonful.
Text: Nigella Lawson