I made this for our friend Mădălin as a birthday cake, after asking about his favorite ingredients (the answer was bananas, cream and nuts). This was the result: two layers of banana-bread cake with walnuts in it, with creamy mascarpone, nut and banana cream in between them and all above them, with whole banana slices inserted every now and there, as well as adorning the top. Creamy perfection. :)
The walnuts in the cake layers are crushed but not completely ground so they can provide an occasional crunch, while the ones in the cream and finely ground and pre-roasted for a very intense flavor.
As you can imagine, it made a very nice present for a very happy friend :). I hope you'll enjoy it too.
Last year: Dark chocolate and red wine cake.
Two years ago: baby making and no cooking. :)
Ingredients: (I used a 23 cm or 9 inch spring-form tin)
For the cake :
- 100 g walnuts
- 100 g wholemeal flour
- 130 g flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 small very ripe bananas
- 100 g butter (plus a little extra for greasing the tin)
- 3 eggs
- 100 g sugar
- 500 g mascarpone
- 2 bananas
- 100 g walnuts
- 120 g sugar
- 2 bananas
- a bit of plain whipped cream (optional)
Start by dry-frying all of the walnuts (200 g) on low heat, shaking the pan once in a while to prevent burning, until they're really fragrant:
To make the cake, preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Next, put the flours, baking powder, butter, sugar, bananas and eggs (all the ingredients except the walnuts) in a mixer:
Mix well and the batter is done. Add half of the total quantity of walnuts (100 g) to it, broken in halves and quarters or roughly chopped:
Mix lightly (by hand) and pour it in the lightly buttered cake tin:
Put it in the oven and bake it for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in it comes out clean. Take out and allow it to cool:
After it's cooled, mount it on a cake stand and cut off the top half (horizontally):
Finely grind the remaining walnuts:
Add the rest of the ingredients to them and mix until an even cream is formed. Spread about 1/3 of the cream on the bottom half of the cake.
Slice the two bananas reserved for decorating and arrange some slices on the creamed bottom half:
Put the top half back in its place:
Coat the cake all over with the remaining 2/3 of the cream. Decorate with the remaining banana slices and a bit of whipped cream, if you'd like.
The cake is done, slice and dig in! :)
Note: Due to the fact that the cream is not baked and contains fresh bananas, it will change color in a couple of hours, as the fruit becomes oxidized. Don't worry, it will still be delicious. Refrigerate the rest of the cake for the next day, if any remains. Contrary to what you might expect, it will actually become better the next day, as the moisture from the cream will penetrate the cake layers. :)