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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Old Fashion Banana Cake

Bananas have had a lot of negative publicity recently in the weight loss industry.  The premise is that bananas will prevent you from losing belly fat.  This is a myth!  I have lost 19 lb since November by enjoying a banana in one form or another almost daily.  Bananas are a nutritional powerhouse full of micronutrients like potassium that helps lower blood pressure.  A medium banana has 105 calories, perfect for a healthy snack.  They have a low glycemic index but high satiety level and they come in their own convenient packaging!

frozen banana
Bananas freeze well.  One of my friends shared her secret for freezing bananas.  Simply pop the banana skin and all in the freezer.  When ready to use, remove from the freezer.  Let thaw just enough to peel off the skin.  Mash while still partially froze.  Pieces of frozen banana can be added to fruit smoothies if desired.

I ran out of fresh bananas (top right) so used one of my frozen bananas.  The banana looked a bit lighter than fresh and the texture was slightly thicker because it was still froze.  This has no effect when the banana is used for smoothies or baking.

baked banana cake
I have a confession...this is the first time I have made a banana cake.  It's not as if I couldn't it's just that my friend sends a banana cake in exchange for a jar of my home canned salsa, much to my husband's delight.  I turned to my trusty Big Red Betty Crocker's Cookbook (circa 1969) to make an old fashion banana cake.

I used my Nami coated baking dish for this cake.  Older cookbooks are my favourite for frugal recipes.  They tend to use simpler and fewer ingredients that can easily be modified for healthier versions.  I did not make this recipe healthier although both the flour and sugar could have been altered to use part quinoa flour (higher protein) and Truvia baking blend (lower calories).  I used unbleached white flour, sea salt and butter.  I omitted the nuts as my husband does not like nuts in most baked goods.

Old Fashion Banana Cake
modified from: Betty Crocker's Cookbook (circa 1969), Pp. 100

2¼ c unbleached flour
12/3 c granulated sugar
1¼ tsp baking powder
1¼ tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1/3 c shortening
1/3 c butter
2/3 c buttermilk
3 eggs
1¼ c mashed ripe bananas

Heat oven to 350°F.  Lightly grease and flower a 13x9x2 inch (or two 9-inch round or three 8-inch round) baking pan.  Measure the ingredients into mixing bowl.  Blend ½ minute on low speed, scraping sides of bowl.  Beat 3 minutes on high speed, scraping bowl.  Pour into prepared pan(s). Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until wooden toothpick tests clean in centre.  Cool.  Frost cake if desired.

banana cake with cream cheese frosting
My friend always frosts the banana cakes she sends over so I decided to do the same.  I chose an easy, deliciously creamy cream cheese frosting.  This frosting is a real keeper, one that can easily be used to frost a wide variety of cakes and cupcakes.  It is very easy to make but when first started it looks like it will be too dry.  It won't be.  A bit of blending is all it takes to get a beautiful, versatile frosting sure to please.

Cream Cheese Frosting
recipe by: Betty Crocker's Cookbook (circa 1969), Pp. 126

3 ounces cream cheese
1 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
dash of salt
2½ c icing sugar

Blend cream cheese, milk, vanilla and salt in mixing bowl.  Gradually blend in the icing sugar until frosting is smooth and spreading consistency.  Add a little extra milk 1 tsp at a time if necessary to get the right consistency. 

cut banana cake crumb structure
My husband was quite pleased when he spotted the freshly frosted cake sitting on the counter.  We we have a special dinner that night that included the cake for dessert.  It is easy to see why this cake has stood the test of time.  The old fashion banana cake is simply delicious!  The cake is moist and tender with a nice body.  The flavour is wonderful, not too sweet, just perfect and the cream cheese frosting compliments the cake nicely.   The cake is cut into serving sizes directly in the pan.  This makes it a very easy cake for after school snacking.  The unfrosted banana cake, like most cakes, should freeze nicely.  The batter could also be used to make cupcakes.  Hands down this banana cake and frosting combination is a sure winner! 

1 food lovers commented:

LindaG said...

No sense in using an old recipe and then making it 'healthier', since you are using 'unhealthy' recipes.

Silly people. Bananas are fine.

Thank you for sharing your recipe with us!