When I was growing up, my mum’s favourite sweet was Banana Cake, so for as long as I can remember, it’s been my favourite too. To this day, I still prefer a carrot, apple or banana cake over the richness of their various chocolate counterparts (but hey – they’re all good, cause they’re all cake). So when I first started working my way through Belinda Jeffery’s Mix & Bake, this amazing recipe was the first cab off the rank, and I found it well-deserving of its name. Apart from the actual baking, every part of this recipe is made in the food processor which makes everything easy. And if you don’t already know this, I’ll share with you a tip my sister-in-law Jo taught me years ago: when bananas go off, you can throw them in the freezer whole – skins and all. When you want to use them, defrost them in the sink and stick the insides straight into whatever you’re baking. The freezing and thawing process causes the still edible insides to go to mush which means you don’t need to do any mashing. And over-ripe bananas make the best choice for banana cake anyway. This lovely big cake serves between 10 and 12 people and costs around $7.
- 1 1/2 (225g) cups plain flour
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda
- 2-3 large very ripe bananas
- 1 2/3 (370g) cups caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 125g butter, at room temperature, cut into smallish chunks
- 100ml butter milk (or a 100ml mixture of half yoghurt and half milk – I do this all the time)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Icing
- 125g cream cheese, at room temperature, cut into smallish chunks (homebrand is fine)
- 75g butter, at room temperature, cut into smallish chunks
- 250g icing mixture
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees (170 for fan forced) and line or grease and flour a deep 26 cm ring tin. Because this is a quite a large cake, if your round or ring tin isn’t very deep, you might like to cook the leftover mixture in a loaf tin – if so you’ll need to line/grease that too.
2. Put the flour, baking powder, salt and bicarb soda in the food processor and blitz briefly. Tip the mixture into a spare bowl and set aside.
3. Stick the bananas in the food processor and blitz until smooth. Add in sugar and eggs and process again for one minute. Add the butter and process again until mixture is thick and creamy. Add buttermilk or yoghurt and milk mixture and vanilla extract and blitz in quick spurts until combined. Add the flour mixture and continue this process until just combined – don’t overdo it.
4. Pour mixture into the ring tin and smooth out the mixture. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a fine skewer comes out clean. The cake won’t have risen much as its quite a dense and moist cake. Cool the cake in the tine for 7 or so minutes and then loosen the inside and outside circles of the cake from the tin using a sharp knife. Turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.
5. For the cream cheese icing blitz the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Add all the other ingredients and process again until you have a smooth, thick but spreadable icing. Ice the cake according to your preference once it’s completely cooled.