Join Juliet and me as we conga around the kitchen island singing Harry Belafonte’s Banana Boat Song .
Got you in the mood for a banana recipe?
The way I figure it, everyone needs a few good banana recipes. Bananas are a health food, after all. According to the LiveStrong site: “The high levels of potassium and carbohydrates in bananas make them a good source of fuel for athletes. The fiber in bananas can help to lower your risk for intestinal problems, high cholesterol, heart disease and diabetes. The fiber can help fill you up and keep you feeling full for longer, helping you keep from eating more calories than you need and gaining weight.” What’s not to love?
I figure everyone also needs a few great banana recipes to use up those unsightly overripe bananas that inevitably end up in your fruit bowl–you know, the ones that shrivel, turn black and ooze out of their skins without the least provocation. (You can, by the way, freeze those over-ripe banana bad boys and use them –right outta the freezer– in any cake recipe that calls for bananas.)
In my home, in addition to my conga-loving rescue pup, Juliet, banana obsession extends to my 27-year-old umbrella cockatoo, Moti. Woe be it to me if I don’t promptly deliver a food dish with a few banana slices to her cage early each morning. I’ve been known to make a sleepy-eyed early-morning banana run to the supermarket to keep Moti in bananas. Trust me, there is no sunshine in in anyone’s day if Moti doesn’t have her morning banana.
Moti is smart, too. Early each morning, perched on one foot next to her water bottle, she ever-so-carefully places pieces of her other foods onto the velcro-like sticky surface of her banana slices where they stay as she eats a little banana and then a little of her other foods, washing it all down with big gulps of fresh water. (What can I say? Everyone is a foodie in my house.)
Fortunately for us all, bananas have been around forever. Well, almost forever. Food historians trace the domestication of bananas to New Guinea around 8000 BCE, making them perhaps the first cultivated fruit. Later, Muslim traders spread the banana across Asia and into Europe and, in the 15th and 16th centuries, Portuguese explorers brought the plant to the new world. In today’s America, the average American consumes 27.9 pounds of bananas each year.
By the way, the plant in the photo (above) is a yellow African begonia, a Staudtil microsperma, from Nigeria by way of Andy’s Orchids in Encinitas. For my gardening friends who are reading this blog, here is the link to Andy’s website: Andy’s Orchids . Prepare to be overwhelmed by the collection Andy has put together.
This truly wonderful banana cake recipe is adapted from one that appeared in Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan. Here is a link to that book: Dorie Greenspan, Baking: From My Home to Yours.
From everyone here, Day-O! to you and yours.
Serves 1 Slice
20 minPrep Time
1 hr, 5 Cook Time
1 hr, 25 Total Time
- 3 C. all-purpose flour
- 2 t. baking soda
- 1/2 t. salt
- 8 ounces unsalted butter (at room temperature)
- 2 C. sugar
- 2 t. vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs (room temperature)
- 5 large very ripe bananas (mashed)
- 1 C. sour cream (or plain yogurt)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Carefully grease your bundt pan.
- Whisk flour, baking soda and salt together. Set aside.
- Add butter to the bowl of a stand mixer and mix until the butter is creamy. Add the sugar and beat until the butter/sugar mixture is pale in color and fluffy in texture. Add vanilla to the butter mixture. Add eggs (one at a time) and mix thoroughly after adding each egg--about one minute after adding each egg. Lower the speed of your mixer from medium to low an add mashed bananas. Then, add one half of the flour mixture and mix. Add the sour cream and mix to combine. Add the remainder of the flour to the batter. Mix until ingredients are combined.
- Using a spatula, scrape the batter into your prepared bundt pan. Rap the bundt pan on your counter once or twice once all the batter is in the pan. This will remove any air bubbles from the batter.
- Bake on the middle rack in the center of your oven at 350 degrees F. for 65 to 75 minutes. (Cover your cake loosely with tin foil for the last 15 minutes of baking.) Your cake will be done when a toothpick or wooden skewer comes out clean when inserted into the center of the cake.
- Let cake cool on your counter and unmold onto your serving plate. Serve plain dusted with powdered sugar or drizzle a powdered sugar glaze (powdered sugar mixed with a little milk) onto the cake. You can serve this immediately or wrap it in plastic wrap and serve the next day. According to the original recipe, the texture of the cake improves when wrapped overnight and served the next day.