Bananas and cakes are two of my favourite things, and when you put them together, magic happens. This cake is particularly heavenly because it has no cane sugar, simply the syrupy sweetness of the ripe bananas and a dash of malty coconut sugar. It is a rather large cake, perhaps better suited to special occasions or when you know there will be many people nibbling away at it, but you're more than welcome to half the recipe if you want a single-layer one.
I matched my slice with a cup of Fruiteatox tea, a deliciously refreshing blend with lemon that goes perfectly with the creamy coconut oil and buttery banana. When making cakes it's very important to use only the highest quality ingredients, so I made this one with Maiden South Pacific coconut oil and Heilala ground vanilla powder. There are some beautiful, high quality brands out there beyond the supermarket shelves - I'll be sharing my favourites in all my recipes from now on, so do have a little look if you have the time.
'Bananas and coconuts - live together, and stay together... and perish together in the oven.'
SIMPLE BANANA CAKE BATTER
8 medium-sized ripe bananas
2/3 cup of coconut sugar
1 1/3 cup of coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons of vanilla bean paste
3 cups of a gluten-free flour blend or spelt flour
5 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
CREAMY COCONUT OIL FROSTING
1/2 cup of Maiden South Pacific coconut oil
2 1/4 cups of icing sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of Heilala vanilla bean powder
1 1/2 tablespoon of coconut cream
Coconut chips, for sprinkling
- Preheat your oven to 180°C on bake mode, with the rack centred. Prepare two cake pans by greasing them with coconut oil and lining them with parchment paper.
- Peel the bananas and place in a medium-sized bowl. Mash with a fork until gooey, with a few chunks left whole if you'd like to find soft banana pockets in your cake later on.
- In a small saucepan over a low heat, melt the coconut oil, then add in the coconut sugar. Add the warm oil and sugar mix to the bowl with the bananas, along with the vanilla bean paste, and mix together with a whisk.
- Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl, then add the sea salt and stir. Make a well in the centre and pour the wet ingredients in, gradually folding more and more of the dry ingredients in from the side until a relatively wet batter is formed.
- Divide this batter between the two prepared cake tins, and place them in the preheated over for approximately 40-45 minutes. I strongly recommend checking your cake at the earliest recommended time in order to prevent overcooking - you can do so by either inserting a bamboo skewer into the centre of the cake, which will come out cleanly, or by pressing down on the middle of the cake. If it springs back, it is cooked.
- Allow the cakes to properly set in the tin for 10 minutes before turning them out onto a wire cooling rack (you could simple turn onto a serving plate, but they won't have the deliciously chewy outside).
- Once the cakes are properly cooled, make the coconut oil frosting by whipping the coconut oil and vanilla bean powder together until creamy. Work in the icing sugar in three parts, adding as much coconut cream as necessary to keep it a creamy consistency and prevent drying the mixture out.
- When a thick but malleable texture is reached, position one of the cakes on a serving plate and smear half of the icing on top, leaving 1cm around the perimeter to allow for smooshing. Place the second cake on top, and scoop the rest of the icing on top. Swirl into a pretty pattern, scatter with coconut chips, and enjoy!