Padkos: Road trip friendly snacks

I wanted to title this post “anything but banana bread” but there are too many things wrong with that. For one thing, how many people would put that into a search bar? Probably more than you think, but maybe I’m the only one who feels distinctly “meh” about baking another banana loaf with overripe bananas.

A long time ago I mentioned the Checkers 50% off marked downs on fruits and veggies, and since we have moved to Plumstead, we have once again found a use for it. Unfortunately, when fruit is so expensive and boxes of bananas are often marked down, we have had far too many bananas, for too many days in close succession. Of the bananas you get in these boxes, only 1 or 2 are ready to eat. The rest are on their way to mush so, unless you have a smoothie maker (ours packed up months ago) the only thing to do is to mash them into something baked. Suffice to say, we have a number of loaves of banana bread in the freezer and I’d prefer for that particular family not to grow – thank you very much.

Which meant, when we were offered some more bananas heading towards their inedible status, we gladly accepted, but I had to find another recipe I could use them in. Enter the Banana Chocolate Chip cookie. If you’re a fan of crisp, shortbread like cookies, I would have to ask you to keep moving. However, if you quite like the softer, more whoopie pie kind of cookie then you’ve come to the right place. After just one cookie, I am already thinking about sandwiching 2 together with some chocolate ice cream or maybe with just some marshmallow fluff. I mean, is there anyone who doesn’t like an ice cream sandwich?

My Google search brought up this Banana Choc Chip Cookie recipe from the Taste of Home website. According to the recipe, it yields 3 dozen but it mentioned a number of half cup measures. I’m more of a full cup kind of person so I just went ahead and doubled the recipe. I mean, if you want to do something, you may as well do it properly. Also, I had 2 huge smooshy bananas that needed urgent attention. But really, just call me #CookieMonster.

From https://cdn.pastemagazine.com/www/system/images/photo_albums/cookie-monster-memes/large/unspecified-6.jpg?1384968217
From https://cdn.pastemagazine.com/www/system/images/photo_albums/cookie-monster-memes/large/unspecified-6.jpg?1384968217

Based on my experience with this recipe, I’m not sure how they managed to get 3 dozen cookies out on just half the batter. I managed to get around 24, normal sized cookies out of double the recipe. Maybe they were making cookies for ants – who knows. Anyway, let’s just get to the recipe, shall we?

Banana Choc Chip Cookie

150g butter, at room temperature

250ml sugar (white or brown would work)

2 large eggs, at room temperature

250ml mashed banana (+- 2 large)

625-650ml flour, sifted (adjust in accordance with the size of the bananas)

10ml baking powder

2.5ml bicarbonate of soda

2.5ml salt

500ml chocolate chips

5ml caramel essence

Method

Preheat oven to 170 degrees celcius and grease a 23x30cm cookie sheet well. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy scraping the sides of the bowl halfway through. Add eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition. Fold in the mashed banana. Add dry ingredients and beat well. Just before you finish up, add caramel essence and mix through. You are looking for a very stiff batter. If it is too loose, add another 125ml flour but use your discretion. This is a cake like cookie so the dough would be as stiff as normal cookie dough.

Drop teaspoon sized portions of batter, 2cm apart on the baking sheet. The cookies spread, but not much. Bake for about 8 minutes depending on your oven. Watch your first batch and then adjust accordingly.

Makes about 24 medium cookies.