Try something new-Banana and Peanut butter teabread

Who loves eating bananas, with peanuts? I do. And so do many other Nigerians. It’s one of our best fruit combos- bananas+peanuts. You should try it if you’ve never done so. It’s so yummmm. Bananas and peanuts are delicious eaten together. Almost every street vendor selling bananas also have peanuts to go with it. Can you really resist the temptation to buy peanuts alongside your bananas? Hardly would you ever.

So I had some peanut butter remaining in my refrigerator, and some very ripe bananas. No one wants to eat the bananas anymore and because I don’t like to waste I thought of a cakelike recipe to use it up. This recipe blends the sweetness of bananas with the savory taste of pure peanut butter. It’s great for serving early-in-the-day guests because these were all gone before I knew it.

You need:

3ripe bananas

1/2cup peanut butter

1/2cup sugar

1/2teaspoon salt

250g flour

1teaspoon baking powder

2eggs(well beaten)

100g butter/margarine

100ml milk

Method

>Prepare a bread pan by greasing with butter/margarine. Also preheat the oven to about 220°C.

Mash the bananas in a bowl together with the peanut butter until blended.

>In another bowl, sieve flour. Add the sugar, salt and baking powder. Rub in the margarine until well combined then add the eggs.
>

Now add the mashed bananas and peanut butter and the milk to soften and get a batter as shown.

>Pour into prepared bread pan and bake. Slice some banana and line on the top about forty-five minutes into the oven. Then bake for fifteen minutes more. Total baking time took me about one hour. Teabread is ready when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Leave to rest for about ten minutes before turning out to a wire rack to cool completely.

>Slice and serve.

Yes, it’s about bananas and peanuts. Try something new today.

Bon appetit😋.

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A tale of Coated Peanuts

First of all, I’d like to acknowledge that this recipe I used here is Ghanaian. I think they make the best coated peanuts. I’ve loved these peanuts since I was little. There’s this particular brand that was(don’t know if it still is) so popularly sold in stores in Nigeria, it was imported from Ghana- Burger peanuts. It made me fall in love with peanuts. And maybe that’s why I claim Ghanaian peanuts are the best. But prove me wrong if you want. Now here, as old as I am I still savor these peanuts. Isn’t it time to try the recipe yet?

Fortunately, the first results I got from my Google research were from Ghanaian blogs. So into my kitchen I headed to make these delicious peanuts. The result I got from my first attempt is quite encouraging. So if you like coated peanuts don’t hesitate. Get up and you might be amazed at how easy this recipe will prove to be.

You need:

30ml milk

1 egg

3tablespoons sugar

1/2teaspoon salt

2cups fresh groundnut/peanuts

1cup flour(about)

Pinch of nutmeg

Vegetable oil(for frying)

Method

>Pour the peanuts into boiling water for about a minute then strain. Leave the grounduts/peanuts to dry.

> Whisk together the egg and milk. Add the salt and sugar, then pour in some of the flour and mix to get a runny batter. Add the groundnuts/peanuts and mix together.

>Sprinkle some of the flour into the mixture and shake it to coat the peanuts. Sprinkle again a little at a time and shake. Repeat the process until all the peanuts are well coated and they do not stick to each other. You should get something like this:

>Heat up the oil in a pan. Fry the coated peanuts in hot oil until golden.

Hmm, these peanuts are so delicious. You can enjoy it as snack with a chilled drink.

It’s Easy- Make your own Burger bread at home

What comes to your mind when you hear ‘hamburger’. Like so many other people you may think it’s fat-fetched, something that you’ll have to go and buy at the store anytime you have an appetite for it. But making the bread, burger bread at home is easier than you may think. Then the arrangement, I think there’s a choice as to what may work best forh you.

I want to share with you this recipe because it works perfectly well for me. You don’t have to be a pro to get it right. And you may hesitate to buy burger bread at the store anymore. It’s soft and delicious.

You need:

250g flour

1tablespoon sugar

1/2teaspoon salt

1teaspoon instant yeast

150ml warm milk

2tablespoons melted butter/margarine

1egg yolk(for glazing)

Sesame seeds(for glazing)

Method

>Prepare a baking sheet by greasing with butter/margarine and then sprinkling  with flour.

>In a small bowl, mix the yeast in the warm milk and cover for a few minutes until the yeast froths. That shows the yeast is active.

>In a larger bowl, mix the flour, salt and sugar. Add the melted butter/margarine and mix well. 

>Pour in the yeast mixture and mix until it forms a dough.

>Transfer to a floured surface and knead until the dough becomes smooth and non-sticky.

>Cover with a plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled. This may take about 1hour.

>Transfer to the work surface and knock back to original size. Knead for more five to ten minutes. 
>Divide the dough into four.(At this stage, I start preheating my oven).

>Take one of the doughs, shape into a ball and place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat the same for the other three pieces of dough. Space well apart.

>

Sprinkle some flour on top of the shaped doughs then cover with a plastic wrap. This is to prevent sticking when it rises, causing a mess when you try to remove the wrap. Leave to double in size for about thirty minutes.
>Whisk the egg yolk and brush on top of the breads. Sprinkle some sesame seeds then brush more egg yolk.

>Bake for about twenty minutes or until browned.

While the bread is still warm, slice into two and fill in the burger and tomatoes, lettuce and other goodies to your taste. 

Enjoy this taste of home.😋

Banana and Raisin Tea-bread

I got into the mood for something bananas, and it lingered for a while. It made me remember a banana bread recipe I tried sometime ago but I didn’t write anything about it. I wanted to try it again. But you know what happens when you have so many ideas flooding your mind at the same time and there seems to be some sort of confusion about which should come first. 

Now let me tell you how it happened. Few weeks ago I made a cake for a client. In the extra batch of cake batter which I usually make I decided to add some dried fruits, and the result was OMG! Great! I hope to put up the recipe sometime in the future. So when I had this urge to make some banana bread, which is actually a cake baked in a bread tin, I thought that adding some dried fruits like I did in the other cake would be a good tweak. And yes, it was. I call it- Banana and Raisin tea-bread. So technically, this is a cake. You should try it out. This recipe is actually a keeper. Simple and requires little or no professional skills.

You need:

2 ripe bananas

1/2cup dried fruits

300g flour
1teaspoon baking powder

2 eggs

1/2cup sugar

1/2teaspoon salt

150g butter/margarine

Icing sugar for dusting(optional)

(Serves about six persons)

Method

>

Soften the dried fruits by soaking in warm water preferably overnight. You can store it in the refrigerator until when you are ready to use it for up to a week.

>

Mash the bananas with the back of a spoon to desired consistency. Set aside.

>

Whisk the eggs and set aside.

>Preheat the oven to about 200°C. Prepare a bread tin by greasing with butter/margarine and sprinkling flour on it.

>

In another bowl sift flour, add sugar, salt and baking powder. Add the butter/margarine and mix together until well incorporated(I prefer to use a wooden spoon for this). The result should look like fine granules as shown in the picture above. Add the mashed bananas.

>

Mix well until it forms a very thick paste. Add the dried fruits and the eggs and fold in. You should get a lighter paste as in the picture. Pour batter into prepared bread tin and bake for about twenty minutes. It is done when a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.

>Dust with icing sugar and serve.

Enjoy your tea-bread warm or cold. Oh! and did I forget to say that you can feel free to adjust the quantity of the sugar. But I prefer less than more. And you can also use overripe bananas.

Infact, if you taste this tea-bread, your never going to throw away overripe bananas again.

Homemade Shortbread Fingers- Crave it, Make it

I remember so well shortbread fingers ‘the original’ by McVities bought from big shops and supermarkets back in the day. A biscuit of Scottish origin. It was an expensive biscuit that our parents usually promised to buy us if we perform excellently at school. That means if you know you want to have shortbread fingers then you get to work real hard. That tactic worked. We all worked hard at school and dad always kept true to his word. 

 ‘The Original’ Shortbread had a treasured place in the hearts of children when we were little. I loved it like no other biscuit. The rich creamy taste makes it so filling. I think it’s a Scottish classic biscuit. I knew I would learn to make it one day. That day is here.

You may be surprised to know that shortbread  biscuits has one of the simplest recipes- only three ingredients, that you may readily have in you pantry. These ingredients are the basics. Any other ingredient is optional.

Now that I have learnt how to make it, I’m ready to share the recipe with you. In this recipe, I’m going to use only the three basic ingredients so that you’ll see that once you crave for it, just head to your kitchen and quickly make it for yourself. It takes a very short time to prepare.

You need:
150g flour

100g butter/margarine

50g icing sugar

2tablespoons rice/corn flour(optional:if you desire that gritty texture)

2tablespoons powdered milk(optional:for extra creaminess)

 Method

>Preheat the oven to about 180°C. Prepare the baking sheet by greasing with butter/margarine.

>Sieve the flour into a bowl. Add the icing sugar and the butter/margarine.

>Using a spatula, mix together gradually until all is well combined.

>Squeeze together with your hands and form a ball.

>Roll out the dough to form a square/rectangle of about 2cm thickness.

>Use a knife and trim the edges then cut into shortbread sizes about 2cm×10cm or desired sizes. Make indents on them using a fork.

>Gently lift each shortbread finger onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 15minutes or until firmed up and the undersides show first sign of browning.

Voila! So easy to make it is. At least now my children can have shortbread as many times as they long for it. I don’t have to spend a lot on store-bought ones anymore.

Enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea. Your kids can enjoy it as a snack too.

‘Sauce Arachide’- Say welcome to Burkina Faso

The Burkinabes love this sauce very much, it’s one of their most frequently prepared sauces. Having observed this for about eight years, I asked for the recipe as prepared by a typical Burkinabe. Thanks to Sali Diallo, for not hesitating to teach me how to prepare this sauce.
 The name Sauce arachide literally means groundnut sauce. It is a sauce made from pure groundnut paste or peanut butter as some people know it. So you may prefer to name it groundnut paste soup like I do.

Well, the aim of this post is to help anybody especially young Burkinabes living anywhere whether home or abroad to understand the technique therein.

Sali Diallo told me about a marriage custom in which sauce arachide has a place. After a traditional wedding ceremony, the bride arrives her husband’s family house but remains indoors for the next seven days. On that seventh day, it’s another feast. It is the day the bride makes her official entry into the public. She can henceforth go to the market or other places. It is the bride’s special day and she is happy because she doesn’t have to stay indoors anymore. On this day, sauce arachide is prepared and eaten by those present.

Sauce Arachide can be prepared with either fish or meat. Generally, Burkinabes love to prepare it with smoked fish(poisson fume as they call it). Also, Burkinabes don’t usually mix fish and meat in the same sauce. As a Nigerian though, I asked that we use beef in addition to the smoked fish(Nigerians love to use both fish and meat in the same sauce)😋.

So in this recipe, you’ll learn what gives groundnut paste soup a special place in the hearts of Burkinabes.

You need:

Pure Groundnut paste/peanut butter

Fresh tomatoes(chopped)

Onions(chopped)

Curry powder

Celery,parsley(chopped)

Bell peppers(chopped)

Garden egg

Carrots

Smoked fish

Beef(fried or grilled)

Meat stock

Salt to taste

Seasoning

Fresh pepper

[Note: Vegetable oil is not necessary to be used in this recipe because groundnut paste contains a lot of oil]

Method

>Set the onions and tomatoes over medium heat in a deep pot. Stir constantly until tender.
>Add the bell peppers,then the groundnut paste. Reduce the heat. Stir occassionally.

>Let it simmer until the oil in the groundnut paste floats.

>Add the meat stock, and more water if necessary. Also add the celery and parsley. Stir.

>Do not cover the pot. (Groundnut paste foams and may spill over into the fire if covered when it comes to the boil.  It is advisable to use a pot far deeper than the quantity of the groundnut paste soup you want to prepare).

>Let it boil until reduced. Then add the rest of the ingredients- garden egg, carrots, all chopped to desired sizes. Also add the meat and smoked fish, seasoning, curry powder, fresh pepper and salt to taste.

>Let simmer over low heat until the sauce thickens to desired consistency and the oil comes out again. Turn off the heat.

>Food is ready.

Sauce Arachide can be used as accompaniment to eat rice, beans, yam or potatoes. There are lots of options. What’s your choice?

Keep it simple- Love Nigerian JOLLOF Spaghetti 💘

Welcome to this new week. Another beautiful Monday morning. What did you eat during the past weekend? For most people here it’s about rice, especially on Sundays. My family ate different rice  dishes too but we also had meatpies and local homemade drinks. Vegetable salads played a big role in my meals also because I like eating almost every rice meal with a side salad.

And this, yes spaghetti. My children wanted it and I prepared it for them too. Last weekend was really much about cooking. And I enjoyed it. So I’m sharing with you this Nigerian JOLLOF Spaghetti recipe that I love because of it’s simplicity and deliciousness. Truth be told, I like to eat spaghetti, particularly when prepared like this.

Kids love it when their meals are kept simple. Even your picky-eaters will devour it all😀. My children will always tell me: “Mummy I don’t want spaghetti for school”, and I’ll reply: “Please let me put only a little”. Deal done. I put in their lunchboxes and on returning they say to me:”Mummy I ate all of my food. The spaghetti was delicious”. So keep it simple, save time, make it nutritious with this Nigerian JOLLOF Spaghetti recipe.

You need:

Tomato paste

Onions(chopped)

Vegetable oil

Meat stock

Meat(cut into pieces)

Spices

Seasoning

Red or green bell peppers(optional)

(Note: Quantities of ingredients are left for you to decide based on your taste. Also with a variety of spices available everyone has some preference of one spice over another so this is just a guide. Just follow and make your own adjustments. In this recipe, I used only curry  powder and a seasoning cube.)

Method

>Cook some spaghetti until almost done, say 90% cooked. Drain the water and set aside.

> Make the sauce.

Heat some vegetable oil in a pan.  Add chopped onions. Let it fry until it turns golden at the edges then add some tomato paste.

>

Stir and let fry until the Tomato paste looks crisp.

> Add curry powder, seasoning cube or other spice and seasoning of your choice. Stir.

>Add some meat stock then the pieces of meat(I grilled the beef). Let simmer for about three minutes then pour in the cooked spaghetti. Use a wooden spoon to stir gently and carefully making sure to mix the sauce and spaghetti thoroughly and evenly. Add the shredded bell peppers if using.

>It’s ready. Remove from heat and serve hot.


Your child will hardly say no to this. 

A closer look.

Pepper Sauce

Hello pals. Nice hooking up with you all once again. I’ve tried so hard to squeeze out time for something I really love to do, sharing my recipes on this blog.

However, this time I’m shifting focus off pastries. Let’s do a little bit local dishes, African dishes. I want to do something different. It’s been so much about patries, but I also love actual cooking.

 Tell me, what could make you late for breakfast sometimes? And if it happens, what would you rather want to eat? So it happened that this fateful morning we were to have a very late breakfast. Oh, except my 4+ and 2+. As for my almost seven-years-old, she’s a big girl now. She doesn’t want to eat what other children love to eat like chocolates, noodles, milk, and so on. Can you imagine that? 😂. In fact, this pepper sauce is go-to for her. She likes it so much as I do. I think my daughter may be able to withstand the spiciness of this pepper sauce more than some adults can.

Now seriously, this pepper sauce is packed with nutritional goodness. For one thing, peppers are high in vitamina A and C. Also they’re good source of potassium, folic acid and fiber. Did you know that?

Moreover, savory foods need to be spicy judging from my own taste buds. When preparing foods for a large number of people I usually prefer preparing some pepper sauce and keeping it aside for people who share similar tastes with me. Peppers liven up bland foods. And more interestingly, they can be eaten raw😉. 

Let’s now get to preparing this simple but unique pepper sauce.

 You need:

Fresh peppers(You can  also use the red habanero peppers)

Fresh tomatoes

Onions

Spring onions

Vegetable oil

Mackerel 🐟(optional)

Fish stock

(Note: the quantities I used in this recipe are as shown in the picture. Adjust according to your will. The peppers though should be more)

Method

>In a food processor, blend the peppers and onions together. Blend the tomatoes apart, then chop the spring onions.

>Prepare the fish. Wash and cut into parts. Season with salt, onions and pepper.  Add a little water and set over heat. Bring to a boil for about five minutes. Remove from heat and remove the fish from the stock. Fry the fish in hot oil and set aside.

>Heat a little oil in a pan. Then add the onions and peppers. Stir fry for about a minute then add the tomatoes.

>Fry the tomatoes until it appears that the water has all evaporated(this should take no more than three to four minutes) then add the spring onions. Add the fried fish and little stock. Stir and let simmer for about two minutes.

Your delicious pepper sauce is ready.

Serve hot!

I ate mine with some fried yam. A little indulgence doesn’t hurt😉😂.

Hubby said this ‘breakfast is on point’.

What would you rather have yours with?

Eggless Yoghurt cake in milk cream and strawberry

It’s been a while since my last post. Hello there. Times are more hectic than ever. Especially with this hot sun. It’s so tiring. You can hardly accomplish much. Phew! It’s soo hot these days. Who else has this kind of weather in their area? Up to 42°C? Gosh! And what would you rather crave for this time. Really, I crave so many things at a time. It’s crazy sometimes. But anything chilled is so much welcome for me now. Don’t know about you. And the worst thing about this weather is that it takes the most part of the year, lasting from mid-February to about mid-July, or even August. That’s up to half of the year! In my opinion, I think vacation in desert countries should fall this period. So that people can travel out of the country at least, and have a breath of fresh air. Unfortunately though, my wish is fat-fetched. Vacation period starts at about the time when the sun begins soft-pedaling its intensity.
However, we have to get to deal with it now. This yoghurt cake is perfect immersed in chilled milk cream and strawberry. That’s how I wanted it. And you can imagine how quickly the milk cream dissolved on the cake drizzling down the sides. Screaming hot weather!!😮.

And lest I forget, I had this for dinner. It was perfect, after a long, hectic day. So let me teach you how I made this lovely cake.


You need:

For the cake

300g flour

1/2cup icing sugar

1/4cup sugar

1/2teaspoon salt

250ml yoghurt

250ml water(about)

2teaspoons baking powder

150g butter/margarine

Vanilla flavour(optional)

For the cream

1cup milk

1tablespoon butter/margarine

1/2cup icing sugar

1tablespoon flour

Fresh strawberries(chopped)

Method

>Prepare a round or square cake tin by greasing with butter/margarine and sprinkling flour on it. Also preheat your oven to 190°C

>Sieve the flour into a bowl. Add the salt, sugars and baking powder. Mix well. Rub in the butter/margarine until well combined.

>Make a well in the center, pour the yoghurt. Add the  vanilla flavour to the yoghurt if using. Use a whisk to gradually mix together. When it begins to come together add water little by little. This is because you want a slightly thick batter. Increase your speed and whisk well until the batter looks glossy and there are no lumps.

>Pour into the prepared baking tin and bake for about thirty minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Voila! You have your eggless yoghurt cake. You can eat this baby as delicious as it looks. But if you want to go the extra mile with me like I craved for then prepare the milk cream. Meanwhile chill the cake in the refrigerator while you prepare the cream.

>Pour the milk into a pan. Add the butter/margarine. Set over low heat. When the butter has melted and the milk begins to boil, add the flour and stir quickly to dissolve. Add the icing sugar and continue stirring until the mixture begins to thicken. Let it thicken to the consistency that it boils slowly, it’s ready. Turn off the heat and let cool completely. Put it in the freezer for about three hours. It will become like ice-cream.
>Slice your cake in half.

Spread the cream generously on top of the cake. Sprinkle the strawberries generously on top of the cream too. Cover with the other half of the cake. Spread more cream, more strawberries. Cut into two parts and serve.

(Note: your cream may not drizzle down the sides if your climate is cool. Because of the hot weather here the cake and cream once out of the fridge warms up quickly)

Enjoy this goodness of a cake😋.

Strawberry/Yoghurt cake

One of my earliest escapades when it comes to baking is strawberry cake. I enjoyed it then. And now I decided to give it another try but with some sort of variation- adding yoghurt to it.
This was a hit. Strawberry/Yoghurt cake was a real hit. You can readily see it from the picture. The first time I didn’t use as many fresh strawberries as I used this time. This cake has got more yoghurt and strawberries than flour and sugar. That’s one thing that makes it exceptional. It’s so rich, and sweet too. The yoghurt made it quite moist on the inside, and, take a look at the strawberries; they melted making the  cake look just like it’s jam-filled. And you don’t need to be told the taste that strawberries add to pastry. Almost irresistible. Yoghurt and strawberries have blended so well in this cake that the result is just what you need when you crave for any strawberry pastry. Surely you’ll want more. It’s so good.

Well, I think I’ve said enough. You just get your things ready to give making this wonderful cake a try. I tell you, you’ll make it again.

You need:

300g fresh strawberries

200g flour

1cup sugar

1cup plain yoghurt

1/2cup melted butter/margarine

2eggs

2teaspoons baking powder

Method

>Preheat oven to 200°C. Greased a ring-shaped baking pan and set aside. Melt the butter/margarine and set aside.  Wash and cut the strawberries into quarts and set aside.

>

In a bowl, whisk the eggs until it appears to have risen. Then add the sugar and melted butter. Continue whisking till it foams again.
>Sift the flour, add to the egg mixture and mix with a wooden spoon. Then fold in the yoghurt and strawberries. It should look like this:

>Pour into the prepared baking pan and bake for about thirty minutes or until a toothpick inserted into it comes out clean.(Note: I used a ring-shaped pan to allow for even baking. Because the quantity of yoghurt and strawberry is much it could result in a very dense cake if baked in a simple pan).

Enjoy your Strawberry/Yoghurt cake warm or cool. If any leftovers you can store in the refrigerator.