Sunday, June 28, 2015

Brown Butter Banana Cake

Yeah so I am thousand of miles away from home in San Francisco now at 3am in the wee hours here. Techniquely speaking my body system is still in tune to Singapore timing at 7pm. Sucks to be awake at this hour but again I can get some blogging done. :P And great to clear up some of the backlogs that has been in my computer forever. And this Brown Butter Banana Cake is one of them I most definitely want to share with you guys. Yup, like I always say, you can never have too many banana cake recipes. :)
The buttery caramelized aroma is just so inviting! Such simple treats we can cook up right at home. :)  The key to makig this cake a successful one lies in making some good brown butter. I got most of the tips from Joy the Baker, whom is like the queen of all brown butter bakes! 

Ingredients for this cake is probably all avaliable in your kitchen now, so let's get stared shall we?

Ingredients for Brown Butter Banana Cake (makes 2 small loafs or 1 big 9x5x4")
250 g cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
100 g light brown sugar
25 g caster sugar

200-225 g mashed banana (I used 3-4 very ripe banana)
2 large eggs
120 g brown butter (I used 130 g butter to get this amount)
100 ml buttermilk

  • In a saucepan, add the butter in and cook over low fire. Once the butter has melted, keep a watchful eye over it. Soon enough you will hear popping and crackling sound. That is water cooking off in the butter. Once th water is cooked off, milk solids in the butter will begin to brown. Swirl it gently and keep watch! To prevent the butter to brown too quickly, just remove it from the pan.

  • Set the butter aside and let it cool. Once the brown solids has settle to the bottom and the butter is cool enough to handle, pour the butter out leaving the brown solids out.

  • Preheat the oven to 170C. Grease and lined two small loaf or 1 big loaf pan. 
  • In a large mixing bowl, sift in the cake flour and baking powder. Add salt and give it a mix. Add in the sugars. In another bowl, combine the mashed banana, eggs, buttermilk and brown butter together. Whisk till well combined. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry. Fold it gently and do not over mix.

  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes for small loaf, 50-55minutes  for a big loaf. Or till the tester comes out clean and cake is golden brown.

Simple bake and yet so much depth in flavor and aroma. With the addition of buttermilk sure made this cake really soft and moist. My tip would be try to get the real store bought buttermilk rather then making it with milk and lemon (unless you really an't get it), because it does taste different. 

Do try this out when you have ripe bananas hanging around in the house. I am sure you have your favourite banana recipe, but I bet you have not tried browning that butter you add into the recipe. ;)

Okay guys, gonna catch a couple more hours of shut eyes before I head out for more shopping later. Catch you guys later!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Thick and Fluffy Kinako Pancakes

I believe most of us folks have seen those tall and really thick pancakes, either at the cafe or perhaps on some soical media platform. :P I am sure we all wonder how in the world did they manage to make such a thick pancake? Is there such a mould selling somewhere? Tell me! 

Well...instead of waiting for others to show me how or just wasting more cash in cafes eating dont know what they add in food, let's have a DIY session. Experimenting is my middle name...yeah it used to be chocolate. Anyway...I remember seeing it on some FB video awhile back and figured I give it a go, keeping my finger sna toes crossed, haha!

As if I have not enough challenge on hand, how about trying it with a new pancake recipe? Yeah, I can't stand same-old same-old, plus I need to live up to my middle name yo. :P Result? Awesome~!
I mean this is pretty decent right? Not as pretty as your cafe ones, but to be able to enjoy this at the comfort of your own couch, I mean home, it is a winner already. Plus at a fraction of a price too. ;) So happy my Kinako pancake recipe turned out so well with this method. No eggs added mind you, so this recipe can be considered vegan too, woohoo!

Without further ado ladies and gentlemen, let's look at what are the work involve here.

Ingredients for Vegan Kinako Fluffy Pancakes: (Makes five 3" diameter ~2" tall pancakes)
1 three inch diameter metal cookie cutter ring
1 parchement paper sheet, for lining the metal ring
120 g silken tofu, left in fridge overnight to drain out excess liquid
160 ml fresh soy milk 
80 g Cake flour
20 g Kinako powder
3 tbsp caster sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
  • First we need to prepare some parchement paper liners for the metal ring, which in a way help the pancake to rise easier and also for us to remove the ring with ease. I've made a short video on how you should make the parchement liners. You need to measure out the inner width and cut out the paper first. The width and height of the parchment needs to be at least 1" thicker. You need to make 5 of these liners.


  • Next, make your pancake batter. One easy way is to blend everything in a blender. But I like to do it the traditional mixing way. :) First, mash the silken tofu, then add in the soymilk and mix well.

  • Next add in all the dry ingredients: Cake flour, salt, kinako powder, sugar, baking powder and soda. Give it a good whisk. Dont worry if the tofu bits are visible, it need not be perfectly smooth, but so long as it is not chunky will do.

  • Heat up a non stick pan and grease it lightly with melted butter. Place your metal ring and one of the paper liners on it. Note that the one below is too tall, you only need about 1-2cm taller then the metal. If it's too tall, it will be hard to flip later. 

  • Make sure the fire is at lowest. The scoop about 4 tbsps of the pancake batter in. I used my ice cream scoop which I put two scoops.

  • Cover the pan and let cook at low fire 5 minutes. I used my phone timer to keep track. After 5 minutes, open the cover, you will realise the batter has rose up pretty high to the rim.

  • Again note that the parchment paper liners are only about 1-2cm taller then the ring. You do not want to over fill it, the result wont be pretty. You risk having a mess flipping them afterwards. It takes a couple of trials to make this perfect, theres no foolproof method to get it right the first time. 
  • Next you gently lift the pancake to check if the bottom is golden brown. Once it is, use a thong to remove the metal ring and spatula to carefully flip the pancake over to the over side. Cover and let cook for another 4 minutes at low fire again.

  • Once the pancake is done, you can carefully remove it from the pan can remove the paper liner around it.

  • Repeat the whole process again till all the batter is used up. Serve it up with cold butter and sweet honey. Best thing in the world. Enjoy guys!

Perhaps this will be the breakfast that you can whip up for Daddy on the coming Father's Day? Plus that kinako flavor is so so nice, even my kids enjoyed it so much! Amazingly fluffy and delicious, sure to impress anyone you serve it with. So wait no more guys and save your money, make these fluffy Kinako pancakes at home. ;)

Have a good time cooking!