Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Baking for Nightshift- Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Tonight I go back to work after having had the last week off sick. As you may have read in my previous post I have had issues with sore joints since I got a pretty non-descript virus a couple of months ago. So far it is still considered a viral arthritis BUT there is a 50% chance of it becoming permanent Rheumatoid Arthritis. As I am a 'glass half full' kind of person I choose to see it as being a 50% chance of it going away! Anyway as it got to the point of me not being able to walk properly or use my arms and hands properly, there hasn't been too much going on in the kitchen as of late. Luckily for me I have been started on a course of steroids and they have really made a huge difference to my being able to function...well once I sorted out the dosing that is. I am one of those irritating-to-some, 'active relaxers' and I find it really hard to sit still for too long so needless to say, the fact that I can now bake and cook again is wonderful...so long as I make sure I take some time out to rest a bit. As I am going back to work tonight armed with steroids and pain killers I thought I would whip up a wee cake to take with me. 

I had read about this banana cake on one of the many blogs I follow. I'm not really a big fan of banana cake to be honest but easy recipe+big cake+over ripe bananas+night shift=this recipe! Besides that, anything with cream cheese icing is sure to taste amazing anyway. I really liked that this cake is unadulterated and uncomplicated. It's just a plain banana cake with no bells or whistles entered into the mix. I have tasted it and I think it's lovely with the right consistency and crumb. I was a little confused as this is an American recipe and it called for Pastry flour which from my research has a bit more gluten and protein in it than our standard flour. I ended up using a mix of high grade and plain flour in the end. As well as that it took much longer to cook than what the original recipe stated and I ended up covering the top with tin foil to stop it from browning too much on top. Make your own favourite cream cheese icing recipe. I just put in about 100g butter with 125g cream cheese, some vanilla and icing sugar to get a nice soft consistency.

Banana Cake 

2 2/3c flour (I used 2c plain and 2/3c high grade)
2 2/3c sugar
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3 large or 4 small very ripe bananas
3 eggs
1/2c buttermilk
3/4c canola or grapeseed oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla 

Heat the oven to 170C.

Into a large bowl sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, mash the bananas with an electric beater until smooth. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, until each is completely incorporated, then mix in the buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Finally, mix the dry ingredients into the batter just until thoroughly combined.

Pour into a 25cm round cake pan . Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until cooked (you may need to cover the top loosely with foil if it is browning too much. Cool on a rack.

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