Thursday, August 18, 2011

Petite Banana Cakes

Petite Banana Cakes - made August 13, 2011 from Cocolat by Alice Medrich (book #150)

Out of an entire cookbook named after chocolate, I chose a non-chocolate recipe.  Go figure.  But I had overripe bananas in my freezer and I was in the mood for something non-chocolaty for once.  I also needed to take something over to my parents' house for my weekly Sunday visit and they generally prefer something that isn't chocolate so this recipe fit the bill.  I've had this book for years but confess it's another one that I've hardly ever used.  The pictures are beautiful and the recipes don't look hard but many of them are long and require a lot of time and planning.  I can do the second but don't have enough of the first whenever I feel like baking.  So it's no coincidence that I chose one of the simplest recipes in the book to make.

However, I'm glad I did as this turned out to be a pretty good banana cake.  Still not quite up to Icing on the Cake's banana cake which is my pinnacle for banana cake but it came pretty close in terms of texture and taste.  If I had frosted it with cream cheese frosting, it would've come even closer.  As it was, it works well as an unfrosted cake too.  I made these in mini panettone liners and liked that much better than baking in ordinary cupcake liners.  You don't even need to put the panettone liners in a muffin tin as they can standalone on a baking sheet and bake just fine without losing shape.  Not to mention I like how they looked more than ordinary cupcakes.

1 cup lightly mashed ripe banana (about 2 large bananas)
¼ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ¼ cups (9 ounces) sifted cake flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
½ cup (3 ½ ounces) brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup (5 ounces) coarsely chopped walnuts

1.      Preheat oven to 350⁰F.  Combine mashed banana, buttermilk, and vanilla in a small bowl set in a pan of hot water.  Set aside until mixture is at room temperature.  Meanwhile sift together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
2.     In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter.  Gradually add white and brown sugars until very light.  One at a time, add eggs, beating until each is incorporated.  Add the sifted dry ingredients in 3 parts, alternating with the banana-buttermilk mixture in 2 parts.  Beat each addition only until incorporated; scrape the bowl as often as necessary.  Fold in walnuts.  Use a spoon or a pastry bag with a large opening to fill muffin cups about three-fourths full.
3.     Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center tests dry, 20-25 minutes.  Cool in the pan on a rack.  Cupcakes can be prepared up to 2 days ahead and stored in a covered container in the refrigerator or frozen for up to 2 months.


  1. I am needing to use up some browned bananas living in my freezer too. These look like a great way to do it!

  2. Looks delish.

    We'd love you to share your recipes with us at
    Simply Delish Saturday

  3. These look wonderful and I love petite! Try roasting your bananas next time--such flavor added. XOXO

  4. Susan, roasting the bananas sounds like a great idea. I'll have to try that next time before I put them in the freezer. Thanks.

  5. Baking the bread using in a panettone liner sounds interesting but not sure I'm brave to attempt this. How exactly do you make the liner. Do you wrapt parchment paper around a round can and tape it around.

  6. Aura, I bought the mini panettone molds. I wouldn't be brave enough to make them myself :). I edited the post so there's a link on "mini panettone liners" to take you to where I bought them.

  7. Hi there - I found your blog while searching for reviews for these Petite Banana Cakes. Love the scientific approach. Is this one the closest contender to your ideal banana cake? If not, which one is? Lastly, me also being Filipina, do you have a recipe for butter baked bibinka you like? Thanks!

    1. Hi - I haven't found a favorite banana cake recipe yet that's as good as the one from Icing on the Cake (sadly).

      Not sure which kind you mean for "butter baked bibingka"? I like the sticky kind

      I've also made the cakey kind with butter and sugar on top but I didn't like it as much