Saturday, June 13, 2009

Noah's Birthday Banana Cake

You may remember Noah from Julie and Noah's Wedding Cake. Well, he just turned the big thirty-something (34? 35? 36? I can't remember) and threw an impromptu BBQ party. Julie was so sweet to call me up and let me know that as much as they love my cakes they were just going to order something from the store since the party was so late notice and they didn't think I would have time to bake something up. I told her I didn't take it personally (I don't--but how cute is it that she warned me? I love it.) but that I had some time to throw something together for him if their plans didn't work out.

I guess Noah's ears perked up when he heard I had time to bake him something, because a few hours later Julie called me back to say that Noah would love it if I had time to bake him a banana cake with dark chocolate frosting. I laughed, told Julie that the only banana cake I knew how to make was the same one they got for their wedding, and that it was no problem.

i write like a fourth grader

June 6, 2009
Name of cake: Birthday Banana Cake
Occasion: Noah's Birthday!
Constituents: one 9x13 layer Rose's Sour Cream Banana Cake frosted with Sour Cream Ganache

Noah doesn't like a lot of frosting. Neither do I, but he likes less frosting than me. He was really excited about how little frosting there was on my birthday cake (which was the perfect amount considering how seriously rich it was) so I knew he'd want something like that. I decided that the best way to have a little amount of frosting was to do a sheet cake--one nice layer of frosting on the top and sides, nothing in the middle. So a 9x13 it was.

birthday banana cake

Now as you know, a two layer, 9 in cake recipe will fill a 9x13 pan. Rose's Sour Cream Banana Cake recipe (and the accompanying Sour Cream Ganache) is for a one layer 9 in cake, so I doubled the recipe(s), headed out to the store and bought everything but the bananas. Dangit.

Seeing as I forgot the main ingredient, I spent that evening measuring out everything and getting it ready and planned to bake it the night before the party instead.

banana birthday cake

I love this banana cake. I am not much for bananas when they aren't in cake, but in cake, especially this one, I am 100% on board. It is moist, a little tangy from the sour cream, a little dense and sturdy because of all the fiber, but still tender, soft, full of flavor and not too sweet. It has a homey flavor dressed up in fancy textures.

I especially love this banana cake when it is frosted with Rose's Sour Cream Ganache. It hits the right rich and decadent notes without being too overbearing or too sweet. It stays thick, fudgy, and tangy. Perfectly delicious.

sprinkles in the afternoon

However, this cake was kind of a fail. The middle sunk because, as we discovered when we cut it, it didn't cook all the way through. Dangit. The cake tester had come out clean but it was a big liar. Joelf just told me to frost a little more heavily in the center so that it would all come out even, and we could cut from sides in and hopefully avoid the gooey bits. I warned Noah to take a piece from the outside because that's where the frosting was the thinnest, and the cake actually baked through.

When you get a cake from me, you either get sprinkles or flowers as decoration. I opted for sprinkles this time around--seemed more celebratory--and left a space in the middle for these cool glittered blue birthday candles. We lit them up and sang to Noah before he could blow them out.

glittery blue candles!

It was a fun birthday bash as many of the party goers were also wedding goers. They were nice enough to remind me that they liked the wedding cake! It was fun to see them again, and fun to help Noah celebrate his big day.

happy birthday noah!
that there little girl in the bottom right is picking off and eating as many sprinkles as she can before getting caught!


  1. Oh, that is a shame that it didn't get baked in the middle! Darn it all.
    But it sounds perfect sour cream chocolate ganache and banana cake. Such a good combo.
    I can't believe you forgot the bananas! That sounds like something I would do. I would be spitting mad with myself. I like you even more, knowing you do this kind of thing too!
    I love the picture of the little girl picking off the sprinkles. Too temping to leave alone. There just should be more sprinkles on stuff.

    You are on a real baking spree lately. I am liking this.

  2. tempting...I do know how to spell it.

  3. OMG, banana cake with sour cream ganache is the best thing ever! Except I like mine with about equal portions of cake to ganache. :) I put extra warmed ganache on the side that I dip my cake into...yum! Your friend is lucky that he can get a revisit of his wedding cake...we should all be so lucky!

  4. Melinda, luckily, I had another day to bake the cake so I wasn't as mad as I could have been. Phew! I just saw Noah yesterday and apologised for not baking the cake all the way through and he didn't even know what I was talking about. Nice guy.

    Amanda, woah you are hardcore! I love that like warm ganache on the side for dipping. This is a wonderful cake, fast becoming one of my favorites too.

  5. Yum! I hate bananas in their raw state, but I luuuurrrrvve them in baked goods. This looks really good. I believe I must finally purchase this Cake Bible about which you rave.

    P.S. Love your hairdo in the pics -- you look so pretty!

  6. Aw, Raiuchka, you are too nice!

    TCB is the best cake book ever. But, Rose is about to come out with a new cake book called Heavenly Cakes and you might just want to wait for that one. It comes out this fall, I think. Rose has a banana cake in that book too and I don't know if it is an improved version or what.