In this recipe series, we bring you recipes by Julia Toon, culinary motivator and author of the book ‘Good Eating: A Taste of Qatar’. New recipes every week,
straight from Jules of the Kitchen.
A really easy recipe using the delicious and nutritious banana.
Did you know that the simple banana is a natural remedy for many ailments? When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around. So maybe its time to change the old adage from the apple a day to ‘a banana a day keeps the doctor at bay’!
Did you know that an average banana contains about 400 mg of potassium – more than 10% of the recommended daily intake of this important mineral – doctors could well start recommending eating this fruit on a daily basis, especially if you are suffering from high blood pressure. It is a proven fact that bananas play a vital role in reducing blood pressure and doctors recommend between 2-5 ripe bananas should be consumed daily.
So please enjoy this rather special cheesecake, not only for its GREAT taste but also for its magical nutritive contents.
Preparation time: 30 – 35 minutes
Chilling time: 4 hours or overnight
400g packet Digestive biscuits
Pinch ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cinnamon
4 medium ripe bananas
1 lemon – juice and rind
½ tsp vanilla essence
2 x 200g packs full-fat cream cheese
4 tbsp full fat firm laban – or thick plain Greek yoghurt
100g light brown sugar
Gelatine set – optional
3 tsp powdered gelatine
¼ cup water
Fresh strawberries or bananas
Digestive biscuit crumbs – crushed and sieved over the top.
Prepare biscuit base
Place biscuits and spices into a food processor and crush to a fine crumb.
Melt butter and mix with biscuits.
Press crumb mixture into cake tin using the back of a large spoon. Either leave as a flat base or build up the sides (see picture).
Put in the fridge to chill and firm.
Sprinkle gelatine over water in a small heatproof jug; stand jug in a small saucepan of simmering water. Stir until gelatine dissolves. Cool 5 minutes.
Place all ingredients in a food processor, adding bananas and lemon juice last. Pulse until smooth whilst adding a thin stream of cooled melted gelatine. Do not over process.
Spoon the banana cheesecake mixture on top of the biscuit base. Level the surface then cover with cling film and leave in the fridge until set (at least 4 hours) or overnight.
Decorate with slices of fresh strawberries and dust with biscuit crumbs.
Jules tips: Ingredients will fill a 24cm spring-release cake tin. To prevent the bananas discolouring mix lemon juice and bananas before processing. The addition of gelatine is optional; for a firm banana mousse centre add the gelatine, otherwise omit and enjoy a softer textured cheesecake. The dusted biscuit crumb effect is very simple – just push a biscuit through a fine sieve and shake all over the top. This cheesecake can be frozen but tastes and looks so much better if it is not, as the freezing can cause the banana filling to slightly discolour.
Contributed by: Julia Toon, Jules of the Kitchen
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