When I was a kid all my friends were tall and strong, unlike me – I had a sort of development delay, so to speak (due to my mom’s death) and I was very tiny. Can you imagine how much I loved P.E. classes? #not
I was always picked last for everything and I don’t blame my colleagues: I could barely hold a basketball, let alone play with it.
I’ve had this book for years and had only baked from it once. I thought of me, always picked last, and felt that I was doing the same with the book. I felt guilty. So I baked from it. I made this banana cake and brought it to the office. All I’ll say is that my coworkers loved it even more than the Texas sheet cake – and I thought that chocolate was unbeatable... :)
Banana sheet cake with fudgy chocolate frosting
cake from The All-American Dessert Book, frosting from Modern Classics Book 2
2 1/3 cups (326g) cake flour*
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
scant ½ teaspoon salt
2/3 cup (150g) unsalted butter, slightly softened
1 ½ cups (300g) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
½ cup (130g) plain yogurt
1 ¼ cups well mashed overripe bananas (about 4 medium bananas)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
185g dark chocolate, finely chopped
1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream
¼ cup (56g) unsalted butter
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter and flour a 22x32cm (9x13in)** baking pan.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl and stir well. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs and yolk, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the yogurt and beat for 1 more minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl again.
Reduce the mixer to low, and then beat in half of the dry ingredients just until incorporated. Beat in the banana and vanilla, then the remaining dry ingredients. Beat just until incorporated.
Transfer batter to the prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan over a wire rack.
Make the frosting: combine the chocolate, heavy cream and butter in a small heatproof bowl. Set it over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until completely melted and smooth. Cool completely then refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. Using an electric mixer, beat until thick and fluffy. Spread over the cooled cake.
* homemade cake flour: 1 cup (140g) all purpose flour minus 2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons corn starch
** I made the exact recipe above and used a 20x30cm (8x12in) pan