YaYa’s in the Kitchen: Banana Cake Meets Three Chocolates
CELEBRATING SUMMER TRANSITIONS INTO CELEBRATING FALL!
As promised, I will be sharing recipes which you can easily prepare with your grand/children (no minimum age requirement), can be made with minimal supervision depending on each child’s age & “kitchen” experience, or if you are “sans” children, just for you! I have been baking & cooking, well let’s just say, for a long time. And I have incorporated this into my Speech-Language Pathology services since my early years as an SLP. So here goes, an easy and delicious chocolate treat!
TODAY’S post is to Celebrate National Chocolate Day, October 28, 2015.
Before starting: Set the oven to 350 and prepare your baking pan(s). This recipe makes PLENTY so be sure to share or freeze.
First made for Labor Day Weekend 2015…enter a new theme on a traditional favorite. How to make banana cake appeal to everyone? Just add chocolate! But not just some chocolate, three layers of chocolate. First, cocoa to the batter, semi-sweet chocolate bits to be stirred in after the bananas, and last, a topping of YaYa’s highly requested chocolate ganache. Now you can make this as a layer cake, as cupcakes, or in two loaves as I did. If you want less, 1/2 the recipe! But, I suggest the full recipe, then share or freeze any extra!
- (3) bowls
- Electric hand mixer, optional
- Mixing spoons
- Measuring cups and spoons
- (2) medium loaf pans, cupcake trays, or pans of your choice
- Tools for mashing the bananas (forks, masher, etc)
- Cooling Rack
- Clean hands!
- Oven mitts, etc.
Ingredients & Directions for Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate Banana Cake
- Cake: Bowl 1
- 2 cups of white whole wheat flour (you can use your favorite type)
- 1 cup of cocoa powder (I use dark special cocoa)
- 2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Cake: Bowl 2
- 3 large ripe bananas- mashed
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
- scant 3/4 cup of light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 to 2 teaspoons of vanilla
- 1 cup of chocolate chips (I use semi-sweet)
- Optional: 1/2 – 1 cup of chopped nuts of your choice
DIRECTIONS FOR THE CAKE (BOWLS 1 & 2)
- Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
- Whisk together mashed bananas, oil, applesauce, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
- Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients (bowl 1 into bowl 2) and mix until combined.
- Stir in the chocolate chips.
- If adding nuts, stir in the chopped nuts.
- Pour into prepared (greased/floured or baking sprayed) pans.
- Bake 15 – 20 minutes for cupcakes/muffins, Bake 30-45 minutes for cake pans. Check and see if the toothpick test comes out clean. Cook longer if needed. Usually, you can smell the cakes and the will have a slight spring when touched, but do not leave an indentation from your finger’s touch.
- Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes and then turn out and cool completely.
- Once completely cooled, you can pour the ganache over the cakes or wait for the ganache to thicken more and spread it. OR, IF you prefer, you can use your favorite chocolate icing!
NOW, while the cake(s) is/are cooling, it’s time to make the ganache.
Ganache: Bowl 3
- This is half of a typical ganache recipe that you would use for a layer cake, but more than plenty for this recipe.
- 1/2 cup chocolate bits or chopped chocolate, I used semi-sweet
- 1/4-1/2 cup heated almost to boil cream or heavy cream (without cream? I have even used whole milk, but it will come out slightly thinner)
Pour the heated cream over the chocolate and let it sit for 5 minutes without stirring. Then begin to whisk, starting in the center, stirring out in larger circles. Stir till smooth and shiny. Let it cool, until the desired thickness. The longer it cools the thicker and more like icing it becomes. If left long enough ganache can be used for truffles. Store any unused ganache in an air-tight container in the fridge for later use. (See above for topping the brownies).
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