Monday, April 15, 2013

The Best Banana Cake Recipe Ever - REALLY!

Bottom round frosted and topped with sliced bananas

We've been baking a lot lately.  Linda McCartney's Lemon Drizzle Cake.  Lemon Upside Down Cake.  Today we made our FAMOUS DATE BARS.   But our favorite new sweet recipe is for Double Banana Cake.  It's from Baked Expectations in Winnipeg, Canada.  According to the Winnipeg Free Press, "Baked Expectations is the place to be for those who want to have their cake and eat it too”

Our love affair with Double Banana Cake began when we came across the recipe in the RSVP column in Bon Appetit. RSVP is where Bon Appetit's editors share recipes they have sought out at the request of readers who covet an unforgettable restaurant (or bakery) dish and just have to have the recipe.

Well, Double Banana Cake is our new favorite.  We first made it last week and polished if off in record time.  We plan to make another tomorrow.   That's how good it is. And it's really simple to make.

Double Banana Cake

Cake Ingredients
1½ sticks butter, room temperature
1½ plus 1/3 cups all-purpose flour,
¾ tsp baking soda
¾ tsp sea salt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1½ cups coarsely mashed very ripe bananas (3 large)
3 oz 0% Greek yogurt

Make the Cake
Preheat oven to 325°. Butter 1 8” round pan. Line bottoms of pan with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Using a stand mixer beat 1½ sticks butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 2–3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time beat for 1-2 until fully incorporated, scrape down sides and bottom to make sure everything is combined. With mixer on low, gradually beat in flour mixture, scraping sides of bowl. Add in bananas and yogurt, beat for 30 seconds until combined. Pour batter into pan.

Bake cake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 45 -55 minutes. Let cool for 20 minutes in pans on wire racks.

Invert cake onto wire rack and remove parchment; let cool completely.

Frosting Ingredients
2 sticks butter, room temperature
4 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup skim milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 generous pinches of sea salt
2-3 ripe but not mushy bananas cut crosswise into 1/8” slices

Make the Frosting
Using a stand mixer beat first 5 ingredients in a large bowl until light and fluffy, 6–7 minutes. (if too thin add more powdered sugar 1 tbs at a time. If too thick add milk 1 tsp at a time)
With a serrated knife cut cake in half horizontally. Place 1 half of cake into a cake plate. Spread a layer of frosting over. Arrange banana slices on top of the frosting. Top with other half of cake, cut side down. Spread a thin layer of frosting over top and sides of cake.

This cake is fabulous. It is lighter than banana bread and loaded with banana flavor. The frosting, for being so simple, adds just the right amount of sweetness and the layer of bananas in the center is genius.