Having a good banana cake recipe is a must – even if it is just a way to use up all those bananas that you put in the freezer when they got too ripe. This recipe is one of the very first recipes that I hand-wrote into my very first cookbook (the measurements are in ounces rather than grams). It is such a versatile recipe to have and I use it in lots of different ways to make cakes, muffins and desserts – it has never failed me. The basic recipe is the same whatever you are making:
6 oz (~170g) sugar
2 mashed bananas (fresh or frozen)
1 tsp soda
2 tbsp boiling milk
1 tsp baking powder
8 oz (~230g) flour
Cream butter and sugar, add eggs, mashed bananas, then soda dissolved in boiling milk. Lastly add flour and baking powder previously mixed.
You can add about 1/2 cup of chocolate chips or walnuts (or whatever else takes your fancy) if you want and stir them through at the end.
Bake at 180C:
- in muffin tins for 15 minutes
- in 2 sandwich tins for 20 minutes
- in a ring tin or loaf tin for 30 minutes
- in a cake tin for 35-40 minutes (check that a skewer comes out clean)
Banana choc-chip muffins or Banana walnut muffins are a favourite.
I will often make a banana cake in a ring tin and just sprinkle with icing sugar, or ice it with lemon or chocolate icing. You could fill the centre with walnuts or decorate it with edible flowers if you wanted to make it look special.
If you use the sandwich tins then you can fill it with cream and sliced bananas for a dessert. Or with lemon curd, quark and sliced bananas. You can cut one of the layers in half and just make half a cake – putting the other layer in the freezer for another time. You could try a super-duper triple layer cake for a special occasion.
Cream cheese icing is always good on banana cakes and you can add a citrus or passionfruit twist:
75g butter, at room temperature
250g cream cheese
4 cups icing sugar
Pulp of 2 passionfruit (can use frozen) or zest and juice of 1 lemon plus zest of an orange
Mix together until smooth and creamy. Spread on or in cake (or both).
Or if you are feeling really decadent, perhaps a maple cream cheese icing drizzled with chocolate ganache (or caramel sauce):
250g cream cheese
3 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
Juice of half a lemon
Mix together until smooth and creamy.
Chocolate (Peanut Butter) Ganache
175g dark chocolate
1/2 cup cream
Can add 1 tbsp peanut butter for a different twist.
Break chocolate into pieces and put into a bowl with the cream. Heat together in a double boiler, stirring until thick and combined. Add the peanut butter at the end and mix well. You can use a microwave instead of a double boiler. Microwave on high for 30 seconds initially and then in 10 second intervals, stirring vigorously in between.