Cuca de banana (Sweet bread filled with banana)

"Cuca" is a sweet bread of German origin, typical of Southern Brazil. "Cuca" can be filled with banana, apple, grapes, berries, "goiabada" and "dulce de leche". The name of the recipe is probably derived from the German "kuchen", meaning "cake". 
Sweet bread dough takes a long time to rise, so, there are also simplified versions of this recipe, made with baking powder. 
Here you will find the traditional recipe.

Ingredients

  • For the dough:
  • • 250 all-purpose flour
  • • 150 g sugar
  • • 7 g active dry yeast (15 g fresh yeast)
  • • 50 g butter
  • • 100 ml whole milk
  • • 1 large egg
  • • 1 tablespoon of liqueur (optional)
  • Per la copertura:
  • • 5-6 Chiquita bananas
  • • 120 g all-purpose flour
  • • 200 g sugar
  • • 1 heaped teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • • 100 g cold butter

Preparation method


For the dough
1. Dissolve dry yeast and a teaspoon of sugar in two tablespoons of warm water. Let it rise inside the turned off oven until it has doubled in volume. 
2. Put the butter in a small bowl with the milk. Heat them until butter is melted and set aside. 
3. In a large bowl combine flour and sugar, add the yeast mixture, the egg, the butter and milk mixture and the liquor. 
4. Use a spatula or a wooden spoon to mix until a smooth, soft dough forms. The dough will look resemble a batter. 
5. Let it rise covered inside the oven until doubled in volume. It takes more than an hour because it is a very rich dough.  
6. Grease a rectangular mould (20x30 cm) with butter or line it with parchment paper.  
7. Gently pour the dough into the mould and allow to rise for 30 minutes more. 

For the crumble topping
1. In a bowl combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and the cold butter cut into small pieces.  
2. Work the dough with your fingertips until the mixture has a texture like sand. 
3. Using your hands, press and form the mixture into a ball and put it into the refrigerator to cool down. 

To assemble the "cuca"
1. When the dough will be puffy and almost doubled in size add a layer of sliced bananas. 
2. Remove the top dough ball from the refrigerator. Use your hands to break up the top dough into crumbles. Sprinkle crumb topping over banana slices. If you want, you can let it rise a little more. 
3. Bake in a preheated oven at 220° C until it is lightly browned. It takes about 30 minutes.
Posted on: 06 April 2016
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