There are times when I would find myself frustrated when I am not able to cook a particular recipe just because I am missing a vital ingredient or two.
For example, just recently, I wanted to make a pasta recipe from a cookbook, which required cilantro. So I headed to the supermarket, only to discover that it was already out of the fresh herb. The blessing in disguise: I ended up inventing my own pasta dish, which turned out to be a great discovery.
Fast forward to today. A balikbayan aunt is in town, and I wanted to make my favorite Avocado Pistachio Butter Cake, as a sweet conclusion to another “grand production”. But apparently, avocados are currently out of season now (is this really true?), and the supermarket did not have any.
Since dessert was still very much a must-have, I decided to make banana cake instead. To make it special, I used Pili nuts and topped the cake with shavings of bittersweet chocolate. It was a smashing hit! As usual, the butter cake base that I modified from Epicurious.com was perfectly moist.
Talk about a delicious blessing in disguise!
CHOCO-BANANA CAKE with PILI NUTS
Butter Cake Recipe (originally from Epicurious.com — with modifications)
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 whole large egg plus 1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup whole milk
4 bananas, crushed
1 cup coarsely ground pili nuts
3/4 cup shaved bittersweet chocolate
Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in middle. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan, then line bottom with a round of parchment paper and butter parchment. Lightly dust with flour.
Whisk together flour (1 3/4 cups), baking powder, and salt.
Beat together butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add whole egg, yolk, zest, and vanilla and beat 1 minute. At low speed, mix in flour mixture, milk, bananas and pili nuts alternately in batches.
Place mixture in rectangular baking pan. Top with bittersweet chocolate
Bake for 20-40 minutes at 375 F.