On Friday, I was rostered onto our fortnightly divisional morning tea. My division takes morning tea seriously. There is a lot of pride (and a certain amount of pressure) placed on what people bring. In our rostered group of four each fortnight, someone always buys sausage rolls, and others splurge on cheese platters and often fancy patisserie cakes. Some of us bake.
I must admit to a bit of angst about what to bake. I nearly ran out and did a supermarket shop. But then someone reminded me that I had a lot of soft bananas to use up, so why not go with classic banana cake?
I was secretly a bit worried that my colleagues would think that was a cheapskate. But I figured that you really can’t go wrong with home baking, and this classic Country Women’s Association recipe makes a particularly moist cake. I had several compliments, requests for recipes, and in one instance, someone literally ran down the hallway for a slice. I made two cakes and there were no leftovers.
This cake works best with ripe bananas – okay if they are nearly black. If your bananas are about to go off, you can put them whole into the freezer until needed. I then just zap them in the microwave for 15 seconds to loosen the blackened skins to remove before mashing.
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup self raising flour
3 medium sized bananas
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
125g cream cheese
2 tablespoons peanut butter
3 tablespoons (or to taste) icing sugar
- Cream the butter and sugar. (I cheated and microwaved the butter until it was almost melted). Mix in the vanilla, then add in the beaten eggs mixing well after each addition.
- Mash the bananas, making them as fine as possible. Add them to the butter and sugar mixture.
- Warm the milk slightly, and add the bicarbonate of soda.
- Fold in the flour mixture alternatively with the milk/bicarbonate of soda. Mix with electric mixers on high speed for around five minutes or until pale and fluffy.
- Bake in a lamington tin of 20cm round tin at around 170C for 25 to 30 minutes. (My oven is quite hot, so I cooked at 150C.) Allow to cool.
- To ice the cake, allow the cream cheese to come to room temperature and then beat all the ingredients together. Smooth over the cake and chill slightly before serving.
Note: recipe for the cake comes from page 201 of the forty-second edition of ‘The C.W.A. Cookery Book and Household Hints’, 1992