Banana and Salted Caramel Blondies

Soft, fudgy blondies flavoured with banana, dark chocolate chips and a swirl of sticky salted caramel.

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This weekend, I found myself in the common scenario, of ending the week with a bunch of overlooked and over ripe bananas, which were just begging to be baked into a cake!

Last time I had leftover bananas, I decided to be a bit adventurous and make banana milkshake cupcakes rather than a banana bread, so this time I thought I would try and do something equally as exciting.

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I decided that banana and salted caramel would make a really good combination, so I ended up making banana blondies, with a lovely gooey swirl of salted caramel. And voilla, my old bananas were transformed into a deliciously sweet dessert!

These are a great weekend recipe,and I’m sure if you brought them along to a party – like fiesta friday – they would be much appreciated!

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Variations: I think a some pecans or hazelnuts would taste great in this recipe, or even a swirl of peanut butter!

Ingredients: Makes 12 generously sized slices

The Salted Caramel Sauce:

  • 200g granulated sugar
  • 1tbsp water
  • 100ml double cream
  • 75g butter
  • 1/2 a tsp of salt

The Blondies

  • 125g butter
  • 200g white chocolate
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 200g plain flour
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • 100g dark chocolate

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To Make:

The Caramel Sauce:

Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until it has turned a deep golden brown colour (about 130C on a sugar thermometer)

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Remove from the heat and stir in the butter, cream and salt, set aside. (onced it has cooled a little, taste to check the salt taste is strong enough for you!)

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The Blondies:

Preheat the oven to 180C and grease and line a rectangular baking tray.

Melt together the white chocolate and butter in a small pan over a low heat.

Combine the sugar and eggs in a large mixing bowl until fully incorporated, then fold in the chocolate mixture.

Mix in the mashed banana, flour, and finally the dark chocolate chips.

Pour into the prepared tin, and then pour in the salted caramel sauce, ripple this into the cake batter with a wooden spoon.

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Bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through.

Leave to cool completely, then it into 12-14 slices to serve!

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Mocha & Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Chocolate cupcakes, with a salted caramel centre, topped with a creamy coffee mascarpone buttercream swirl. DSC04507 I have been meaning to put up a cupcake recipe for a while, but I have been distracted by making full sized cakes and pies, but when thinking of ideas for a second recipe using my salted caramel sauce, I decided that it would be best used in some cute delicious cupcakes. I love the combination of sated caramel and chocolate, but I wanted to mix it up a bit. So I’ve also included a coffee buttercream, which adds an extra flavour dimension, to balance the sweetness of the chocolate and salted caramel.

These are probably the most attractive cupcakes I have ever made, I am really pleased with how good the icing looks, piped onto the cake in the lovely swirly pattern. Although I am calling them cupcakes, I have actually made them in muffin cases, because I think making them larger, allows them look more like the kind of temping cakes you see in coffee shops, much more professional! (And also because you get to eat more cake in one sitting!)

Because they look so beautiful, they would make fantastic celebration cakes! Why not make some for Mothers day?

Variations: The icing could be changed to caramel or chocolate if you are not a fan of coffee. Or some even more adventurous flavours could be used, like a coconut buttercream frosting! DSC04513 Ingredients: Makes 12 Large Cupcakes

The Chocolate Cupcakes:

  • 2 Eggs
  • 150g Butter
  • 150g Sugar
  • 120g Dark Chocolate, melted
  • 150g Self Raising Flour
  • 1tbsp Crème fraîche

The Filling:

  • 12 Tbsp Salted Caramel Sauce

The Mocha Buttercream:

  • 115g Mascarpone
  • 100g Butter
  • 400g Icing Sugar
  • 3-4tbsp Instant Coffee, dissolved in 2 tbsp hot water.

To Make:

The Chocolate Cupcakes:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and fill a cupcake tray with 12 muffin cases.

Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Crack in each egg and stir through, one at a time.

Pour in the melted chocolate and fold into the mixture.

Fold in the flour and crème fraîche.

Spoon the mixture into the muffin cases, until each case is 2/3 full.

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Bake in the pre-heated oven for 12 minutes, until cooked through.

Leave to cool completely on a wire rack before filling and icing.

IMAG0173 Filling:

Cut a hole into the top of each cupcake, 3cm wide and 3-4 cm deep.

Fill the hole with 1 tbsp of the salted caramel sauce.

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Whisk together all ingredients for the buttercream in a large bowl, until combined and the mixture turns glossy. (Taste the mixture at this point to see if it needs more coffee).

Spoon the buttercream into a piping bag with a star shaped nozzle. Pipe a swirl of buttercream onto the top of each cupcake and decorate with some chocolate sprinkles.

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The cupcakes are now ready to serve! DSC04515

Other Recipes you might like:

Salted Caramel & Pear Tart:

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Salted Caramel and Mascarpone Ice Cream

Creamy salted caramel ice cream, studded with chunks of chewy salted caramel.

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Ice cream is one of my great weaknesses, I always struggle to resist the temptation to buy a tub at the supermarket, and when on holiday I buy a scoop of gelato at every opportunity! I got my ice cream maker for Christmas last year, and since then I have been making delicious ice cream at home!

This is easily one of the best ice creams I have made yet, the mascarpone and salted caramel go together perfectly to make a really satisfying moreish dessert.

As promised, this is the first of a few recipes using my salted caramel sauce and salted caramels. You will need both to make this recipe, but you could just make the caramel sauce, and swap the caramel chunks for a salted caramel sauce swirl.

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can always skip that step and put the mixture straight into the freezer, it will just take a while longer to set.

Variations: Some chocolate chunks would be a nice addition to this ice cream, or some cinnamon!

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Ingredients: Makes around 1 pint.

  • 2 Eggs
  • 150g Caster Sugar
  • 250ml Double Cream
  • 2tbsp Salted Caramel Sauce
  • 125g Mascarpone Cheese
  • 2tbsp Finely Chopped Salted Caramels

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To Make:

Whisk together the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy.

Pour in the double cream and continue to whisk for around 5 minutes, until the mixture begins to thicken.

Spoon in the mascarpone and salted caramel sauce, whisk briefly until incorporated.

Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and churn until semi-frozen.

Stir in the salted caramel pieces, making sure they are evenly distributed.

Transfer to an airtight container and leave in the freezer for at least 3 hours.

Serve two large scoops in a bowl with some salted caramel sauce drizzled over the top, delicious!

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Salted Caramels and Salted Caramel Sauce: One Recipe, Two Products!

Sweet, chewy salted caramels, and rich, salted caramel sauce.

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I made salted caramels over Christmas as presents for friends and family, and they were a big hit! I decided to make them again, but I also wanted to make a salted caramel sauce, that I could use in other recipes.

The recipe here is just a double quantity of the ingredients for the salted caramels, with half the mixture only being taken to 115°C, before being pored into jars. The rest of the mixture is then heated as usual to make salted caramels.

This recipe is super easy and makes lovely gifts! I will be putting up a few recipes that use the salted caramel sauce soon, so expect a few salted caramel themed recipes!

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Ingredients: Makes one 400g jar of salted caramel sauce and one tray of salted caramels.

  • 1 Can of Condensed Milk – 397g
  • 250g Salted Butter
  • 320g Golden syrup
  • 5-6 Large pinches of Sea Salt

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To Make:

Grease and line a rectangular baking dish with vegetable oil, and baking paper. Sterilize a 400g jar.

For the Salted Caramel Sauce:

Put the butter, golden syrup and condensed milk into a large pan, with 3-4 pinches of sea salt.

Heat the mixture over a medium heat, until the butter has melted and all ingredients are thoroughly mixed – (at this point taste the mixture to see if it is salty enough!)

Continue to heat the mixture until it reaches 115°C on a sugar thermometer.

Take the pan off the heat, and pour half the mixture into a sterilized 400g jar and leave to cool.

Warm up before drizzling over ice-creams or cakes.

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For the Caramels:

Put the rest of the mixture back on the heat, and continue to cook, until it reaches 125°C on the sugar thermometer.

Take off the heat and pour into the prepared baking tray.

Sprinkle the remaining sea salt over the top of the caramels.

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Leave to cool for a few hours before turning out onto a chopping board and cutting into even squares.

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Wrap each caramel in a square of baking paper, and store in an airtight container.

Excellent as a gift, or served as an afternoon treat with a cup of tea or coffee.

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Salted Caramel & Pear Tart

Crispy, gingery pasty case, filled with sweet, sticky, salted caramel and topped with thin slices of pear.

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My parents came to visit me this weekend so I decided to make a lovely tart that we could eat while they were here. I couldn’t make anything with chocolate as my Dad doesn’t like it (I know, weird!), so I thought I’d give a salted caramel tart a go.

This recipe for pastry is the one that I always use for tarts and pies, as it is really nice to work with and doesn’t break easiliy, making it much more amenable to being  rolled out thinly. I’ve used a recipe from the Primrose Bakery for the caramel filling, from their millionaires shortbread, but I have added a few tea spoons of salt.

This recipe turned out really well, and has been enjoyed very much by everyone who has tried it! The crisp gingery pastry works really well with the rich salted caramel and sweet pears, and it looks great, so would be a good finish to any dinner party!

 

Variations: This tart could be topped with another fruit such as apple, or topped with dark chocolate, for an even more luxurious finish.

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Ingredients: Makes one medium sized tart

Pastry Case:

  • 200g Plain Flour
  • 50g Icing Sugar
  • 120g Butter
  • 1tbsp Ground Ginger
  • 3-4 tbsp Cold Water

Caramel Filling:

  • 115g Golden syrup
  • 125g Butter
  • 2 x 397g Tins of Condensed Milk
  • 2tsp Sea Salt

Topping:

  • 1 and ½ pears, sliced thinly
  • Sea Salt flakes

To Make:

The Pastry:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease a medium sized tart tin.

In a large bowl, rub the butter into the four, ginger and icing sugar, until the mixture forms a bread crumb like consistency.

Pour in the cold water, 1tbsp at a time, until the mixture forms a ball of dough.

Turn out onto a floured work surface and roll out into a large circle as thin as possible.

Transfer the rolled out dough to the prepared tart tin and trim off the excess pastry.

Prick the bottom of the case with a fork, and transfer to a pre-heated oven, bake for 10-15 minutes, until just golden.

The Salted Caramel Filling:

While the pastry is blind-baking, make the caramel filling

In a large pan, combine all the ingredients for the salted caramel.

Cook over a low heat, stirring constantly, for about 10-15 minutes, or until the mixture reaches 100C and starts to bubble.

Pour into the pastry case, and bake in the pre-heated oven for 15 minutes, or until it has thickened and turned a golden brown colour.

The Pear Topping:

Place the thinly sliced par over the cooked caramel and arrange in a radial pattern.

Put the tart back into the pre-heated oven for 5-10 minutes, until the pear is cooked and caramelised.

To Serve.

Remove the tart from the oven and leave to cool, before sprinkling over some sea salt flakes.

Slice and serve, on its own, or with a dollop of crème fraîche.

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