On Thursday evening our book group discussed Florence Gordon, a well written, interestingly paced, novel about a prickly protagonist. We recommend it. Whitney requested a clementine tart, something I have yet to bake GF. Since she couldn’t join us and because there were two bunches of ripe bananas in the corner fruit bowl, I opted to make Bob’s Banana Cake, tweaking it just a bit.
Conventional Nutella has long been absent from our larder, so I needed a homemade alternative for the buttercream layer. Below is the recipe for a chocolate nut spread that is darker and richer in flavor than it’s commercial counterpart. Also, I tweaked the cake recipe by using olive oil and adding 1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon and fresh ground nutmeg to the dry ingredients. Couldn’t put my hands on the ground cardamom, but 1/4 teaspoon of it would have been nice as well.
The cake is a treat and homemade chocolate nut spread brings it’s own rewards.
1 cup toasted ordganic almonds
12 ounces milk chocolate, melted and cooled to just above room temperature
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1. Mill the almonds in a food processor until in becomes “butter.”
2. Add the oil, cocoa powder, vanilla and almond extracts, and salt and continue processing until the mixture is as smooth as possible.
3. Add the melted chocolate and blend well, scraping down as needed. There may be tiny bits of almond, but we like the natural texture.
4. Use 1/3 cup when making Bob’s Banana Cake and refrigerate the rest to spread on toast or muffins.
As a lucky recipient of a slice of Bob’s Banana Cake with homemade almond “Nutella”, let me say this buttercream alternative was absolutely crazy good! Pam left a generous slice of the cake for the rest of my family to enjoy the following day … Can you guess how that story ended??