An unusual and overly long spell of rains has been a blessing this year. The grass is tall and juicy, walls mossy and blotchy, trees clean and green, mornings and evenings nippy. Our backyard has turned into a thick jungle with all the bushes thriving, flourishing and pulsating with life.
The green monotony is broken by the pinkness of the Mirabilis Jalapa flowers that offer a lovely contrast.
Yesterday, a constant “cheep… cheep… cheep “, got our attention. The source of this sonorous call was a baby Magpie Robin perched on the wall. The parents were diving into the thick grass and feeding the little one with fat caterpillars and nymphs that are in plenty.
We were caught peeping stealthily at the fledgling and the parents raised alarm. The little one made a low flight and disappeared in the leafy branches of the Neem tree.
We baked a Banana Chocolate Bread yesterday. A bunch of bananas was overly ripe. The bananas were very sweet. Three went into the bread that turned out moist, soft, dark, delish and very chocolaty. I have used chocolate chips that I had in my pantry.
You may add dark chocolate slab chopped into small chunks if you do not have chocolate chips. Serve it plain with tea or serve with whipped cream or with a dollop of ice cream, you’ll love it every way.
Banana Chocolate Bread
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (sifted)
1 teaspoon (scant) salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 very ripe big size bananas
¾ cup castor sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
¼ cup dark chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Line the bottom and grease the sides of one 9x5 inch loaf pan.
Puree the bananas in the blender. Empty in a large bowl.
Add sugar, oil, vanilla essence and stir till well combined.
Whisk together first five ingredients in a large bowl.
Make a well in the center. Add liquid ingredients.
Mix gently till you get a smooth batter. Do not over mix.
The batter should be a little runny. If it is thick, add 1 -2 tablespoon of milk.
Fold in chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or till the top is firm and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and remove from the pan after 5 minutes.
Cool in the rack. Slice when cold or next day for a deeper flavour.