Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Fresh and creamy banana cake

I was skipping through the Ina Garten book, "Barefoot Contessa: How Easy is That?" when I saw a recipe for Old-Fashioned Banana Cake.
With a toddler in the house, bananas are always a staple.
He eats a whole banana in a sitting, or we use them in smoothies, or I add them to his cereal.
But a couple weeks ago I had a few left at the end of the week that were, well, close to the trash bin.
Hating to waste food, I perked up when I saw the recipe for this cake that called for three very ripe bananas.
I slimmed it down a touch with low-fat sour cream and neufchatel for the frosting instead of cream cheese. I also skipped the butter in the frosting and reduced the sugar by 1/2 a cup.
I would have posted it sooner, but I think it has been so long since I blogged here that I forgot how.
Lucky for you, my two readers, I remembered my password, remembered how to take a picture with something besides my iPhone and remembered how to post to the blog.
Now, let them eat cake. Banana cake!

Fresh and creamy banana cake (my lower-fat version of Ina)
with "cream cheese" frosting


3 very ripe bananas
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra large eggs, at room temp
1/2 cup sour cream (I used low-fat)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
grated zest of one orange
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

"cream cheese" frosting:

8 ounces neufchatel cheese
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar

for the cake:

Preheat the oven to 350.
Grease and flour a 9 x 2 inch round cake pan

Mix the bananas, sugar and brown sugar on low until combined. Add oil, eggs and vanilla, sour cream and orange zest and mix until smooth.

Add the dry ingredients in thirds and mix on low until just combined.

Stir in the walnuts.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 45-55 minutes, until a pick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cool in pan for 15 minutes then turn out onto cooling rack.

While cake is cooling, make the frosting.

for the frosting:

Mix neufchatel cheese, and vanilla until just combined. Add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.

Spread evenly over the cake and garnish with more walnuts, if desired.


The cake is so moist and creamy. Even without the frosting it is great.

The orange zest gives it the perfect brightness that it needs to lift it from banana cake to BANANA cake!

The frosting is just, well, the icing on the cake.