And now for the recipes that go along with my previous post.

Banana Cake [adapted from Mom’s Who Think]

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups cane sugar + 1t
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1/2t fine grain sea salt
  • 1/4t aluminum free baking powder
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1t vanilla
  • 1/2t cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 3 ripe bananas
  1. Preheat oven to 350* and grease + flour a 9x13” pan or [2] 8-9” cake pans.
  2. In a sauce pan over medium heat, roast the bananas with 1t of sugar for about 5min, stirring/mashing frequently.
  3. Puree the bananas until smooth.  [use a smoothie maker, blender, hand blender, etc]
  4. Set in the fridge to cool.  When cooled, stir the baking soda into the bananas and set aside.
  5. Cream the butter, sugar + eggs until fluffy, in a large mixing bowl.
  6. Sift the flour once or twice into a medium size bowl, then add the salt, cinnamon + baking powder to the flour and stir.
  7. To the creamed mixture, add the milk and flour mixture, alternating, starting + ending with the flour.  Beat on med-low until just incorporated after each addition.
  8. Stir in the vanilla and bananas until just combined.
  9. Bake 8-9” pans for 25-30min and 9x13” pan for 35-40min. [toothpick test the cake]
  10. Cool on a cooling rack for ~10min, then flip the cake out onto the cooling rack until fully cooled.

[5,000-7,000’ altitude changes]

  • I added 2T extra of the buttermilk
  • Increased oven temp to 365*
  • Lessoned the baking soda to 1/2tsp.


I changed quite a few things around with this recipe.  First, I used King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend.  Cake flour really is where it’s at when it comes to cake baking.  You’ve got to give it a shot!  I upped the vanilla a lot.  It only called for 1/4t, which is how much I put in my oatmeal, LOL.  I think 1tsp was adequate.  I added cinnamon which I think pairs really well with banana.  I didn’t want it to stand out so I kept it at 1/2tsp.  Instead of just pureeing the bananas, I thought caramelizing/roasting the bananas would help to bring the flavor out, as mine were not super ripe.  You might not need to do this if they are very ripe.   I also changed the milk to organic low-fat buttermilk.  When a cake/bread recipe calls for milk [and I’m not trying to use a non-milk product] I almost always choose buttermilk.  It sounds like it must be loaded with buttery fat but really the low-fat is super thick about 120cals + 2.5g of fat for a 1c serving.


How did the banana cake taste?  I was a bit nervous that it would be too much like banana bread or be too strong with the banana flavor, but it was perfect!  The cake was extremely moist and if this make sense…it was fluffy but not airy.  It wasn’t heavy at all…it was just right and the banana flavor was spot on.  Pureeing the banana is a crucial part to making the cake I think.  It adds to the moisture and is more evenly distributed in comparison to banana bread, where sometimes there are still some chunks.  I do not want banana chunks in my cake!  I will definitely make this again and probably not change the recipe much.  Although, if making just banana cake [not paired with the vanilla] I would add more cinnamon :)

Va Va Vanillllaaaa CAKE!

I got this recipe from the back of the King Arthur Cake Flour box and only changed a few things.

  • 2 3/4c cake flour
  • 1 2/3c sugar [I lessoned the sugar to 1 1/2c]
  • 1T baking powder [see note below about baking powder]
  • 3/4t salt
  • 3/4c unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 large egg white, 1 egg
  • 1c full-fat vanilla yogurt or whole milk [I used 1c buttermilk]
  • 2t vanilla extract
  • 1t almond extract [I lessoned this to 3/4t and next time would take it down to 1/2t, this should really be optional]
  1. Preheat oven to 350* and grease + flour a 9x13” pan, [2] 8-9” cake pans or cupcake pan [for 20-24 cupcakes].
  2. Mix all of the dry ingredients on low for 2min.
  3. Add softened [not melted!] butter and mix on medium until crumbly.
  4. Add egg white and beat until combined.  Add egg and beat until combined.  [scrape the bowl down as needed]
  5. Whisk the milk + extracts together.  Then add 1/3 at a time to the dough mixture, beating 1-2min after each addition + scarping the bowl.
  6. Pour the batter into the pan[s]. 
  7. For 8-9” pans bake for 25-30min.  For the 9x13” pan bake for 23-26min.  For the cupcakes back for 20min.  Toothpick test!

[5,000-7,000’ altitude changes]

  • I added an extra 3T buttermilk
  • I used 2.5t baking powder
  • Set the oven to 365*


How did the vanilla cake taste?  Well, minus the slight baking powder problem the cake tasted great.  It was definitely moist but a tad too dense, although not necessarily in a bad way.  I think once I lower the baking powder it will help a lot.  The flavor was awesome.  I am glad that I lowered the almond extract to 3/4t and next time I might even lower to 1/4-1/2t.  Almond extract is really strong and this is a vanilla cake!  I might play around with adding vanilla beans next time too.  This might have been the best flavored vanilla cake I’ve ever had!!  I can’t wait to play with the recipe more.

*baking powder* The 1T seemed like a lot of baking powder for this 1 cake, even at a lower altitude.  The reason you lower the leavening agent in a higher altitude is because the gases will release earlier causing the cake to rise faster, so the outside will cook quicker and brown faster, leaving the inside raw.  I have heard to decrease the powder by 15-25% when at a 5,000-7,000’ altitude.  By decreasing to 2.5t instead of 1T that lowered it by about 16%, however I don’t think that was enough.  The cake did seem to rise too quickly and it was denser than I was hoping for with a thin line [running through the cake about 1/8-1/4” thick] that was not fully cooked.  Any suggestions on this?  Next time I think I might only put in 1 rounded tsp of powder.  On the Mom’s Who Think blog, they seem to usually use a combo of powder + soda, like with the banana cake.  Suggestions?


Rich + Creamy Butter Cream Frosting…the way it should be ;) [adapted from here]

Personally I hate butter creams that are loaded with powdered sugar and made with shortening [instead of real butter].  I want to enjoy the frosting and not go into a sugar shock overload.  To each their own…but if you feel the same, try this out!  Not to mention, powdered sugar is full of corn starch…you know my whole issue with over processed corn products speech ;)

[will frost [2] 8-9” cakes, 24 cupcakes, or a 9x13” cake…if you like a lot of frosting, 1.5x or 2x it to make sure!]

  • 1c unsalted butter, softened
  • 1c pure cane sugar
  • 4T all purp flour
  • 1t arrowroot [optional, will help thicken more, can also sub tapioca starch]
  • 1c milk
  • 1t vanilla extract
  1. Over medium heat, in a small saucepan, cook the milk, flour + arrowroot, stirring frequently with a whisk.  Watch carefully so this does not burn!
  2. Cook until a very thick paste-like consistency is reached.  It takes about 10-20min depending on your stove!
  3. Let cool to room temp [fridge/freezer helps!]
  4. In a large bowl, beat the sugar + butter until the sugar has almost completely dissolved and the mixture is fluffy, 3-5min.
  5. When the milk mixture has cooled, combine together and beat again until fluffy. 
  6. Beat in the vanilla and refrigerate at least 30min to help stiffen the frosting.


Cinnamon Honey Buttercream

  • 1c unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2c pure cane sugar
  • 1/2c + 2T honey
  • 4T all purp flour
  • 1t arrowroot
  • 1/2t cinnamon
  1. Follow directions 1-3 above.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, butter + honey until the sugar has almost completely dissolved and the mixture is fluffy, 3-5min
  3. Follow directions 5-6 above.


I normally use sucanat instead of pure cane sugar, which adds a nice complex caramel flavor to the frosting.  I didn’t want to do that with this frosting because I thought there might be too many different flavors going on.  Just keep in mind that when using the sucanat you’ll have to cream the butter + sugar longer because the crystals take longer to dissolve.

For butter cream, this is a winner in my book!  It definitely extremely creamy and thick with a mellow sweetness.  I looooved the honey + cinnamon addition.  You could really taste the honey flavor come through and well, I’m obsessed with cinnamon. 

Let me know if you have any questions!


CO Bloggers!  Don’t forget to RSVP to the blogger meet-up THIS Saturday!


Aaaand a big thank you to Katie + Kelli for passing along the Beautiful Blogger award to me a few days ago.  Much appreciated! :)  Their blog idea is totally cute!  They are best friends that went to college together but now live in in Connecticut + Colorado.  They switch off on the blogging, which is so much fun!

Time for bed!!  Lots of kitchen work tomorrow making ota.bars for the charity bake sale winners!