Happy Valentine’s Day, people! If, like me, you’ve had enough of pink and red hearts, you’re going to like this post. There’s only one heart in the background. Everything else is either square or tragically brown. Yay!
In my quest to make something not heart-shaped, I first thought of making glazed donuts for my Valentine. Unfortunately, he’s travelling, so I’ll have a belated Valentine’s post next week!
Yes, I have a jar of chocolate chunks. Happy day 🙂
Dig into a (square) piece of this delightfully soft banana cake, topped with a crunchy brown sugar, cinnamon, dark chocolate and oat streusel. Who wants a heart when you can have that!
Strictly speaking, a streusel has flour, and this one doesn’t. But it’s so much fun to say, that I’m just going to call it that. Stroo-sal. Stroo-sal. Stroo-sal.
I adapted the cake and streusel (!!) recipe from here. I won’t repeat it but will list the small changes I made to it:
1. I added 1/4 cup oats to the original topping to convince myself it makes the cake healthy 🙂
2. Instead of the 1/4 cup yoghurt, which I realised too late had run out, I used 1/4 cup warm milk with 1 tsp vinegar. I know that sounds odd, but the batter needs a bit of sourness and acidity and this substitute worked beautifully.
3. I used barley flour for a softer, more wholesome cake. Barley flour doesn’t give the same kind of firm texture that regular flour does, so cut this cake only after it’s COMPLETELY cooled and use a sharp knife to make sure it doesn’t fall apart.
4. I reduced the baking time from 45 minutes to 30 minutes because my oven is over-excitable. Check your cake after 20 minutes, and then again after 30. Because of the streusel topping, it’s difficult to judge whether a fork poked into it comes out clean or not. Poke in a few places and cut out a small sliver if you must. Over-baking will ruin this cake.
5. I used shavings of dark chocolate chunks because I don’t have any more chips. (Hershey’s, if you are listening, please make a trip to Mumbai!) They don’t melt as easily on top of the cake as chocolate chips do but that’s ok.
6. I didn’t layer the cake with the streusel, only used it on the top because I was afraid the cake might get too sweet. It turned out to be a good decision.
The bananas you use have to be seriously ripe, verging on getting spoilt. They help the cake stay moist and enhance the banana flavour.
The streusel topping blew my mind. At first I thought there’s too much cinnamon. But as the cake cools and gets time to absorb all the flavour, it becomes absolutely perfect. It doesn’t stick to the cake though, so be prepared for a ton of crumbs while cutting into it.
The topping is crunchy, not too sweet, cinnamon-y and chocolatey. Why have a plain banana cake when you can add some streusel to it! Make this tonight, show some streusel love 🙂