Cakes lavished with icing appear to be attending a party. They sashay onto your plate with a come-hither look, and you swoon with delight. There’s banana muffins. There’s banana loaf. But the top banana is this old-fashioned banana cake by my favorite cook-book writer, The Barefoot Contessa.
This is a no nonsense, never fail type of cake. A doodle to whip up even if you don’t have a mixer. It has a fine, moist crumb flavoured with orange zest and studded with almonds. And the icing is definitely “the icing on the cake”. Cream cheese frosting and banana cake is a marriage made in kitchen heaven.
This is the cake I make when bringing a dessert to a pot-luck supper. It travels well. It keeps well. You can whip it up a day or so before serving. And it slices beautifully.
|THE TOP BANANA CAKE . . . a delicious doodle to make!|| |
- 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature (or two large eggs and one egg yolk)]
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Grated zest of one orange
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
- cream cheese frosting recipe follows
- walnut halves, for decorating
- Preheat oven to 350F. Grease. flour and then line with paper a 9 x 2-inchround cake pan.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the banas, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on low speed until combined.
- With the mixer still on low, add the oil, eggs, sour cream, vanilla, and orange zest. Mix until smooth.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
- With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
- Stir in the chopped walnuts.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, turn out onto a cooling rack, and cool completely.
- Spread the frosting thickly on the top of the cake and decorate with walnut halves.
- CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
- oz. cream cheese at room temperature
- tbs (3 oz) unsalted butter at room temperature
- tsp pure vanilla extract
- Grated zest from an orange
- /2 cups SIFTED confectioners' sugar (8 ounces)
- Mix the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on low speed until just combined. DON'T WHIP!
- Add the sugar and mix until smooth.