The last time I was casting around for ideas to use up the inevitable overripe bananas sitting in my kitchen I saw one of my more recent cookery book purchases, one which definitely deserves more of my attention. The book is 'The Birthday Cake Book' by Fiona Cairns, and is full not only of amazingly decorated cakes and biscuits (many of which are around different birthday party themes) but also really interesting cake recipes. I sometimes find that books can concentrate too much on the decoration of the cake and the actual cake itself is neglected. Which is slightly daft because however good the cake looks, ultimately it is going to be eaten!
One of the cakes in the book is a Banoffee Cake - in the book this is baked in two 13cm (6") square cake tins, which are then stacked and decorated to look like playing dice - very clever. I used the basic recipe as I wanted to use up my ripe bananas but made a few small changes. I left out the spices (nutmeg and cinnamon) and added a 100g bar of 70% dark chocolate, broken up into small chunks. I also wanted to bake it in an 8"/20cm round tin. This meant that the cooking time was 60-70 minutes (longer than I had expected really, so perhaps check slightly before this time if you make it).
I had intended to add either a chocolate frosting or some other kind of decoration, but ended up running out of time to do this so the cake went to work naked. It was really successful though - banana cakes can sometimes be heavy, dense and almost wet and although this one was quite dense, it was in a pleasant way. It felt substantial and I think the banoffee of the name comes from the toffee flavour imparted by using light muscovado sugar in the recipe. I enjoyed the chocolate chunks in it very much - the bitterness of the chocolate contrasted well with the sweet cake and I would definitely make it again.
This is not a sponsored post - I bought and liked this book!