Recipe: Blueberry, Banana and Coconut Tray Bake

It feels like forever since I posted a recipe here, and as I've been cooking baked goods a lot recently I thought it was time to share a new recipe that turned out to be a hit. Since my boyfriend started his new job as a police officer, I've baked a few things for him to take in for his section to enjoy (and hopefully make those night shifts a little easier). I started with these gooey brownies, then some triple chocolate cookies I posted on Instagram, and most recently a summery tray bake filled with fruit and a coconut flavour.

Whilst Stewart loves anything chocolatey, I love the moisture you find in banana bread and wanted to turn this into a tray bake that's easier to share out amongst colleagues. And so this recipe was born. I used this BBC recipe as the foundation of the banana cake, adding my own tweaks and flavours (including, of course, a buttercream topping) to create something that I will most definitely be making again! I love the squidgy texture, and the blueberry and coconut flavours give a lovely light taste that is perfect for summer- if blueberries aren't your thing, you can easily substitute for raspberries. The buttercream isn't too stodgy, but I do think it would be better with cream cheese frosting, however I didn't have any in the fridge...maybe next time!


For the cake
2 medium bananas (mashed)
150g light brown sugar
1 egg
225g self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
110ml coconut oil (melted) - you can use vegetable oil as like in the original recipe, however, I wanted to emphasise the coconut flavour
2 drops of vanilla extract
140g blueberries (I used frozen)
35g desiccated coconut

For the frosting
140g baking spread
300g icing sugar
A couple of drops of vanilla extract
20g dessicated coconut (for sprinkling on top)

1. Preheat the oven to 170°C (electric), lightly grease a baking dish and line with baking parchment. I used quite a large dish- one slightly larger than a brownie tin (I don't know the exact size measurements!).

2. In one bowl, mash the bananas until it looks like a smooth paste. The riper your bananas are, the better- they will give a sweeter taste and means you will not have to add as much sugar to make up for it. They're a great natural sweetener! Add the brown sugar to your mashed bananas.

3. Gently melt the coconut oil (I popped it in a heatproof bowl and microwaved on a medium heat setting for 30 seconds, then stirring to dissolve the last few bits). Add this, the vanilla extract and the egg to your banana mix and stir.

4. Add the dry ingredients (flour and baking powder) and gently stir into the mixture, being careful not to over-stir. Then gently fold in the desiccated coconut and blueberries. A top tip is to mix the blueberries in some flour before adding to the mixture- this helps prevent the blueberries sinking to the bottom of the cake. If you're using frozen blueberries, you will have to work quite quickly and definitely do not stir too much, or the mixture will start to turn a grey/purple colour and solidify slightly due to the cold temperature.

5. Transfer the mixture into the baking dish and pop in the oven for 25-30 minutes. Check the cake after 20-25 minutes; if a skewer comes out clean it is ready to come out. If it's not quite there had doesn't have that lovely golden colour then stick it back in the oven for another few minutes. Once cooked, transfer to a cooling rack.

6. Once the cake is completely cool, it's time to make the icing! For this, I softened the baking spread before adding the icing sugar bit by bit and the vanilla extract. Smooth the icing across the cake and sprinkle some desiccated coconut over the top. Slice into squares (the recipe make about 20 squares for me). I haven't tried freezing the recipe but I can't see why you couldn't. I stored mine in an airtight container....and they didn't stay around long enough for me to find out how long they would keep for!

Let me know if you try this recipe! What are your favourite tray bakes?

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