Thursday, 4 February 2010

Yeasted Banana and Chocolate Coffee Ring

Bread and Chocolate!  These are two of my favorite things!  And, it’s the theme for the Monthly Mingle this month which is being hosted by none other than Jamie at Life’s a Feast. Jamie also hosted BBD #26. I submitted Chocolate Cinnamon Babka for that roundup.

For this event, I decided to try a new twist on a theme - Chocolate and Banana Yeast Bread! I needed to use up some overripe bananas and this recipe sounded so good.  I love banana quick bread with chocolate morsels, but this sounded even better especially with the chocolate glaze on top.  It’s delicious and the perfect bread for a mingle.

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Yeasted Banana and Chocolate Coffee Ring

The recipe is from Kneadlessly Simple by Nancy Baggett.  It’s a very easy and delicious banana bread filled with chocolate morsels and walnuts on the inside; then topped with a beautiful chocolate glaze on the outside.


  • 3 1/2 cups (17.5 ounces) unbleached white bread flour, plus more as needed.
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon instant, fast-rising, or bread machine yeast
  • 1 1/3 cups thoroughly mashed overripe banana (about 3 bananas)
  • 6 1/2 tablespoons clover honey or other mild honey
  • 2 tablespoons corn oil or canola oil, plus extra for coating dough top and baking pan
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons ice water, plus more if needed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly, plus more for brushing dough top
  • 1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, plus 1 tbsp more for garnish (optional)

Glossy Chocolate Drizzle (optional)   Recipe follows post


Most of the ingredients are added before the first rise and no hand-shaping is required. How easy is that!

Mix together the flour, salt, and yeast in a large bowl.

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Then, place the mashed bananas in a bowl and whisk in the honey, oil, and orange zest.  Yes, it includes orange zest.  You don’t normally find that in recipes for banana quick breads. Then whisk in the water until well blended.

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Vigorously stir the mixture into the bowl with the flour, scraping down the bowl sides and mixing until the dough is well blended; it should be rubbery (and it was!)

Vigorously stir in the butter.  If necessary add some more flour to make the dough stiff so that it’s hard to stir.

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Lightly brush the top with butter.  Then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 to 10 hours.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it rise at cool room temperature for 12 to 18 hours.

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Vigorously stir the dough; adding enough flour to make it very stiff.

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Gradually fold in the chocolate morsels and nuts until evenly distributed throughout the dough.

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Turn the dough into a Bundt pan (or a similar tube pan) and evenly brush the top with melted butter.

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Using a greased rubber spatula, press down and smooth out to even the surface all over.

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Tent the pan with nonstick spray-coated foil.

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Let the dough rise in the pan for 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.  When the dough nears the foil, remove it and continue the rise until the dough doubles in bulk. It took about 3 hours for it to rise.  It was really cold in my kitchen when I made this bread. 

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15 minutes before baking time, place a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.  Bake on the lower rack for 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is nicely browned. Cover with foil and continue baking for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the thickest part comes out clean.  Then bake for another 5 to 10 minutes to ensure the interior is baked through. I didn’t need to use any foil because the bread didn’t brown too quickly on the top.  I also didn’t bake it quite this long or it would’ve burned in my oven.

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Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then run a knife  around the coffeecake to loosen, then remove it to the rack and let it cool. I used a spatula for this part because I didn’t want to scratch my pan.

Doesn’t it look yummy!  I can’t wait to try this bread.  I almost didn’t make the chocolate glaze because it looked so good without it…

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… but I thought it would be fabulous with the Glossy Chocolate Drizzle so I made the glaze with powdered sugar, unsweetened cocoa power, fresh hot coffee, light syrup and chopped unsweetened bittersweet chocolate.  Mmmmm….

Drizzle the chocolate glaze over the coffeecake once it has cooled completely.  You can sprinkle with some chopped walnuts but I didn’t have any at the time so I skipped this step.

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Serve the coffeecake at room temperature.  Cool completely before storing airtight in a cake keeper or plastic container.  It will keep at room temperature for 2 to 3 days, and may be frozen, airtight, for up to 2 months. I did a little bit of both.  I kept some out to eat and froze the rest to enjoy later.

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This bread has been submitted to the Monthly Mingle. Be sure to check out all of the other breads in the Monthly Mingle Roundup.

Recipe and instructions for making the Glossy Chocolate Drizzle

1/2 cup powdered sugar, plus more if needed
1 1/2 tablespoons good-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons hot water or fresh hot coffee
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1 ounce (about 3 1/2 tablespoons) finely chopped unsweetened chocolate or ultra-bittersweet chocolate.

Sift the powdered sugar and cocoa powder into a small, heavy saucepan.  Stir in the water and corn syrup and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Boil for 1 minute, immediately remove from the heat.  Place the chocolate in a small, deep bowl and pour the cocoa mixture over it; don't stir.  Let the mixture stand for 3 to 4 minutes, until the heat melts the chocolate.  Stir until completely smooth, then let cool to warm; it will gradually thicken and develop a drizzling consistency as it stands.

If it stiffens too much, thoroughly stir in a little warm water.  Drizzle the warm mixture decoratively over the coffeecake.  Then let stand until completely cooled.  The glaze will set up glossy and will firm up in about an hour.

Happy Baking!

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