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Banana Walnut Cake with Cinnamon Mascarpone Frosting

Inevitably with bananas comes the day they go from ripe-to-eat to ripe-to-bake and you have to think fast. Instead of muffins or bread, I decided to try cake this time! I adapted the cake portion from a recipe on Sally’s Baking Addiction, but I decided to go a little fancier with the frosting and punch it up a bit. Next go round, I might put some of the walnuts in the cake like I would typically do with bread or muffins, but I liked the added crunch between the layers regardless.

Made one 8-inch layer cake

Ingredients


Banana Cake

  • 3 cups (390 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons (169 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup (198 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (108 grams) light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs (150 grams)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups (354 grams) mashed ripe bananas, about 3
  • 1 1/2 cups (338 grams) buttermilk

Cinnamon Mascarpone Frosting

  • 3 cups (750 grams) mascarpone, cool or cold
  • 1 ½ cups (173 grams) confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup (179 grams) heavy cream

Filling/Decoration

  • 1 ¼ cups (125 grams) toasted walnut halves

Instructions


Make the Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour three 8-inch pans, line with parchment and set aside.
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together. Set aside.
  1. In a bowl fitted for a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or a medium bowl with a handheld mixer, cream the butter and sugars on medium high until light and creamy, about 5 minutes.
  1. Add the vanilla and eggs, one at a time, on medium speed to incorporate. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed, and then add the bananas.
  1. With the mixer running on low, alternate the flour mixture with the buttermilk and mix until just combined. Pour into the prepared pans and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Make the Frosting

  1. In a bowl fitted for a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the mascarpone for about 30 seconds to break up and get creamy again.
  1. Add the confectioners’ sugar on low speed until absorbed, then add the honey, cinnamon and vanilla. Turn to medium-high and whip until smooth and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  1. Turn the speed to medium-low and slowly drizzle in the cream. Once mostly incorporated, turn to medium-high and whisk until fluffy peaks form, about 2 to 3 minutes. Use immediately.

Assemble the Cake

  1. Coarsely chop about a cup of the walnuts, leaving some full halves to decorate the top if desired.
  1. Level the cakes, laying the first one down on a cake board. Fill with the frosting, sprinkle with about 1/3 of the nuts. Layer with the second cake and repeat the process.
  1. Layer the final cake, frost the sides and top and decorate as desired. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

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AnnMarie Mattilahttps://pastryathome.com
AnnMarie Mattila is a writer for Pastry Arts Magazine, as well as a freelance baker and pastry chef in New York. She has a master’s degree in Food Studies from New York University and is also a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education.

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