According to myth, Minos king of Crete every year had to sacrifice his most beautiful bull to god Poseidon. One year the bull that was born was so beautiful that Minos didn’t want to lose it and so he sacrificed another one of a lesser beauty. When Poseidon found out, became very angry and enchanted Minos’ wife to fall in love with the bull. From this union a creature was born, Minotaur that was bull from head to shoulders and human from shoulders to toes.
Minos in order to confine the creature, hired Daedalus to build a place that had so many entrances and exits that no one could leave it without losing his/her orientation.
For years in Athens Athenians were organizing games in honor of their protectress goddess Athena. One time Minos’ son took place and won all of the games. Athenians who felt threatened and jealous, trapped him and killed him. His father Minos came with a large fleet and laid siege to Athens. He won the war and punished the Athenians by forcing them to send to Crete every year seven young men and seven young women who were food for Minotaur.
When Theseus, son of Aegeus king of Athens, came to town, decided to be one of the seven young men who were going to Crete. He decided to go and kill Minotaur. His father king Aegeus, before they left, said to the ship captain that if his son returned as winner to put white sails on the boat. If, he wouldn’t make it, the sails should be black.
So, the ship carrying the 14 young people left Athens and sailed towards Crete. When they arrived, king Minos’ daughter Ariadne fell in love with Theseus and decided to help him in his fight with Minotaur. She gave him a ball of yarn and told him to tie its edge at the entrance of labyrinth and unwind it while he tries to find the beast. Theseus entered the labyrinth and as he was advised by Ariadne and unwound the ball of yarn. When he found Minotaur fought a strong and difficult fight but eventually he managed to kill the beast with his sword.
With the help of the ball of yarn he was able to find the exit very quickly and easy. As Ariadne helped him win, he decided to take her with him and they immediately boarded on the ship and left Crete before anyone realizes that Minotaur was dead.
As they traveled towards Athens, they made a stop at the island of Naxos. There, god Dionysus was dazzled by Ariadne’s beauty and abducted her to make her his wife. Theseus and the others were very sad with this incident and so they forgot to change the sails. Every day Aegeus was sitting on a rock at the edge of Attica and gazed the sea. When he saw the ship returning with the black sails, he thought that his son was killed by Minotaur and jumped from the cliff and died into the sea. The myth says that in his honor the sea from then on was named Aegean.
Crete was and still is a very fertile and rich island in the southern part of Greece. In ancient years Minoan civilization played a key role in the whole Mediterranean Sea. In modern years and currently, Crete is a key factor in many economic sectors of Greek economy.
A monk brought in Crete from Egypt in 1920 a banana plant and from then on, the cultivation of bananas started in the island. The variety is a bit smaller than the ones from tropic countries but they are very tasty. I happened to find them in my local green grocer and bought them. Unfortunately, because my son had a gastroenteritis didn’t consume them all, so they started to mature. I didn’t want to throw them away so I thought I should make a cake. This is not the classic banana cake. That would be too easy to make. This is a stuffed banana cake with tiramisu filling. It is simply delicious. The taste of cocoa, banana and coffee are all blended in this very tasty cake.
- 150 gr. / 5 oz. heavy whipped cream
- 150 gr. / 5 oz. cream cheese
- ¼ cup caster sugar
- 1 tsp espresso powder
- 2 tsp warm water
- 125 gr. / 4.5 oz. softened butter
- 220 gr. / 8 oz. sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 250 gr. / 9 oz. flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 50 gr. / 2 oz. cocoa powder
- 180 gr. / 6 oz. crème fraiche or sour cream
- 3 Cretan bananas or 2 large ordinary ones, mashed
- In your stand mixer whip the cream cheese a bit to soften and add the caster sugar.
- Whip to incorporate.
- Mix the espresso powder with the warm water.
- Add the whipped cream and the espresso and mix with a spatula to incorporate.
- Put in the fridge while making the cake.
- Preheat oven to 180°C / 350°F.
- In your stand mixer add the butter and sugar and mix until fluffy about 2 minutes.
- Add the eggs one at a time and mix after each one to incorporate.
- Sift the flour along with the baking powder and cocoa powder and add them to your batter and whisk gently to incorporate.
- Add the crème fraiche or sour cream and the mashed bananas and mix.
- Take a springform, butter it and flour it.
- Divide cake batter in two portions.
- Pour the first one in the springform.
- Take a piping bag and add the cream cheese batter.
- On the cake batter pipe the cream cheese batter just like in the picture.
- Cover with the rest of the cake batter.
- Bake for about 30 to forty minutes or until the knife comes out clean where the cake batter is.
- Remove from the oven, let cool and unmold.
- Cut and serve.
- 150 γρ. Κρέμα γάλακτος χτυπημένη σε σαντιγύ
- 150 γρ. τυρί κρέμα
- ¼ φλ. ζάχαρη άχνη
- 1 κ.γ. σκόνη εσπρέσσο
- 2 κ.γ. ζεστό νερό
- 125 γρ. μαλακό βούτυρο
- 220 γρ. ζάχαρη
- 3 μεγάλα αυγά
- 250 γρ. αλεύρι
- 2 κ.γ. μπέικιν πάουντερ
- 50 γρ. κακάο σκόνη
- 180 γρ. Κρεμ φρες
- 3 μπανάνες Κρήτης ή 2 μεγάλες λιωμένες
- Στον κάδο του μίξερ μαλακώνουμε λίγο το τυρί κρέμα και προσθέτουμε τη ζάχαρη άχνη.
- Ανακατεύουμε να ενσωματωθούν.
- Προσθέτουμε την κρέμα σαντιγί και τον εσπρέσσο και ανακατεύουμε με μια σπάτουλα να ενσωματωθούν.
- Βάζουμε στο ψυγείο, όσο θα φτιάχνουμε το κέικ.
- Προθερμαίνουμε το φούρνο στους 180° C.
- Στον κάδο του μίξερ προσθέτουμε το βούτυρο και τη ζάχαρη και ανακατεύουμε μέχρι να αφρατέψουν για 2 λεπτά.
- Προσθέτουμε ένα ένα τα αυγά και ανακατεύουμε μετά από το καθένα για να ενσωματωθούν.
- Κοσκινίζουμε το αλεύρι μαζί με το μπέικιν πάουντερ και το κακάο σε σκόνη και τα προσθέτουμε στο μίγμα και ανακατεύουμε απαλά.
- Προσθέτουμε την κρεμ φρες και τις λιωμένες μπανάνες και ανακατεύουμε.
- Βουτυρώνουμε και αλευρώνουμε μια φόρμα για κέικ.
- Διαιρούμε τη ζύμη σε δύο μέρη.
- Ρίχνουμε το πρώτο στη φόρμα.
- Σε ένα κορνέ βάζουμε το μείγμα του τυριού.
- Βάζουμε πάνω από το μίγμα του κέικ το μίγμα τυριού ακριβώς όπως στην εικόνα.
- Σκεπάζουμε με το υπόλοιπο μείγμα του κέικ.
- Ψήνουμε για περίπου 30 έως 40 λεπτά ή μέχρι να βγαίνει το μαχαίρι καθαρό όπου υπάρχει μίγμα κέικ.
- Αφαιρούμε από το φούρνο, αφήνουμε να κρυώσει και ξεφορμάρουμε.
- Κόβουμε και σερβίρουμε.