My name is Laura and I'm a addicted to Pinterest. There, I've said it. Although I am still waiting for that sense that everything will be ok now that I have admitted my secret. I have a feeling that it isn't going to come because all I want to do is get right back onto Pinterest and look at more wonderful things I want to bake. I signed up as a way to promote this blog and although I'm incredibly backward at all this social media stuff for a 22 year old, I've really taken to this platform. There are so many amazing things on there and I love the idea of having different boards for different themes. When I was studying textiles at A level, then Costume Design at university (believe it or not I really did go from costume to chemistry and it's the best decision I've ever made) I intended to makeover a big cork board into an inspiration board and this is exactly what I've done on Pinterest but with baking ideas. It's absolutely perfect for it and it means I don't have to have a massively long bookmarks list on my computer like I used to. So far I've got boards for this blog, pretty things, useful bits and bobs and for stuff I really want to try out at some point baking wise, though the only way I will ever get to try out everything on there is if dedicate my Chemsitry career to making the Philosopher's stone because I don't think I'll be getting the secret recipe off Nicolas Flamel or Dumbledore any time soon.
Pinterest has even taken over how much of my book I read. Normally I would grab my book (currently Peaches for Monsieur Le Cure by Joanne Harris) whever there is a chance to sit still to read a few lines but now I grab whichever piece of technology allows me to view Pinterest. Even my mum found it pretty interesting when I showed her you could look up ideas for furniture for my dad to make. Maybe I should try and persuade her to join. Hmmm. Just a thought. I've had so many ideas sparked from there already and I joined less than a wek ago. My favourite idea that I'm absolutely dying to try out came from seeing a pastel arrangement of cakes on a stand for an afternoon tea. I won't say any more at this time though because I want to keep it a surprise and if I don't tell you all about it just yet I can pretend it never happened if it all goes wrong!
This probably sounds like a shameless plug to get you to follow me on Pinterest but truly it isn't. It would be lovely if you did, I'm not going to get any more pushy than I already have with all the buttons and links down the side of this page. So let me leave Pinterest for now and get on with telling you about the banana and date cake. My inspiration for this cake from a recipe for Yorkshire Ginger Parkin that I pulled out of a magazine a couple of years ago that originally came from the Total Greek Yogurt website. I thought a parkin recipe with dates in was a bit different so kept it to try and it was only when I pulled it out of my archives last week that I twigged it wasn't a parkin recipe in any shape or form. Just because it has ginger and golden syrup in doesn't make it a parkin. How dare they falsify a recipe like that?! However, I know that recipes with yoghurt in are really moist and I wanted to do something with the banana that was going brown (another moist cake maker) so I played about with it and this is what I came up with. It's very easy to make and despite the melting method being used you needn't be exposed to the hob being on full blast on a hot day because it works just as well in the microwave. What's more is that the yoghurt doesn't need to be a full fat version either like so many things need to be to work in baking. Also, it is very sweet but because of the fruit in it you can feel as though you are being good so satisfying both the angel and the devil in you.
So there you have it, a cake to make while searching Pinterest. Am I the only one who searches for a multitude of things to make on there? Say it isn't so!
70g golden syrup
225g self raising flour
110g dark soft brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ginger
80g dried stoned dates
- Melt the butter and syrup together in a bowl in the microwave, stirring to mix together. Set the oven to 170 C/150 C fan and line a 8"-9" square cake tin with baking parchment. If you're using a silicone pan like me, place it on a baking sheet. I always give silicone pans a quick sprinkling of flour but it probably isn't necessary.
- Sift the flour and spices into a large bowl and stir in the sugar. Chop the dates into small scissors and stir into the flour. Scissors are the easiest way of chopping sticky fruit you'l most liekly find.
- Peel, slice and mash the banana well in a jug then mix with the egg and yoghurt. Pour into the dry ingredients with the melted butter ans stir eveything until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 mins ish until it is golden and a skewer or cake tester inserted into the centre comes out clean. If it is still hissing a lot when it appears done, turn the oven out and leave it in there for another five mins before taking it out and cooling on a wire rack. Cool for about 30 mins or until you feel confident it won't fall apart then turn out to cool completely on the rack. Cut into pieces and serve. I cut ours into 9 generous squares.
Hope you enjoy!