Thursday, February 4, 2016
banana chocolate chip upside-down cake.
Look, when a recipe involves bananas nestled in brown sugar and paired with chocolate chips its going to be all of 5 seconds before my brain says "How soon can I make this?".
I stumbled upon this gem while perusing David Lebovitz's blog. I have the tendency to get lost in the rabbit hole that is the recipe archives on my favorite blogs and I'll emerge an hour later with a list about 20 recipes long of things I've convinced myself I need to have in my stomach RIGHT NOW. This landed at the top of the list mostly because I was dubious. Can you have an utterly delicious cake that involves only 2 tablespoons of butter? Is that even possible?
The moral of the story is yes you can and that you should always trust David Lebovitz. He knows his desserts and he knows how to make a really good dessert. This is an impossibly addicting banana cake; moist, flavorful, and dense in that satisfying way banana cakes tend to be. Studded with chocolate and layered with hints of caramel it's best suited for an afternoon snack or when just really need a pick-me-up because its been one of those days.
Banana Chocolate Chip Upside-Down Cake
Recipe adapted slightly from David Lebovitz
Notes - I swapped 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour for oat flour because while banana and chocolate is good, banana, oats, and chocolate is even better (to me at least). You can also replace another 1/2 cup of flour with spelt flour if you feel so inclined (I've been on a bit of a grains kick as of late) but using only all-purpose isn't a bad thing.
I also doubled the chocolate. Not sorry. If you wanted to swap half the chocolate for toasted nuts (walnuts! pecans!) I would think that's a most excellent idea.
One 8-inch (20 cm) cake
For the Topping
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons (60 g) packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons water
3-4 ripe medium bananas
a few drops of lemon juice
For the Cake
1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour (see notes above)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup (150 g) granulated sugar
2 tablespoons (30 g) melted butter, salted or unsalted
2 large eggs
1 cup (250 g) banana puree (about 2 bananas)
1/2 cup (120 g) sour cream, regular or low-fat or buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (160 g) chocolate chips or chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate
To make the topping, place the brown sugar and water in an 8-inch (20 cm) cake pan. Warm the pan directly on the stovetop over low heat, stirring until the sugar is thoroughly moistened.
Simmer the mixture for about 45 seconds. Let cool to room temperature.
Peel and slice the bananas in 1/4-inch (1 cm) slices. Arrange them in slightly overlapping rows over the melted brown sugar. Sprinkle with a few drops of lemon juice.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl, making sure there are no lumps. Mix in the granulated sugar.
In a small bowl, mix together the butter, egg, egg white, banana puree, sour cream, and vanilla.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and stir in the wet ingredients until almost combined. Do not overmix. Gently fold in the chocolate pieces.
Scrape the batter into the pan over the bananas, then use a spatula to carefully spread the batter over the sliced fruit.
Bake for 40 minutes, or until the cake feels just set in the center when you touch it.
Cool the cake for about 20 minutes, then run a knife along the edges of the cake to help it release from the pan. Invert the cake onto a serving platter.
Serving: The cake is best served warm with whipped cream, vanilla ice cream, or by itself as a snack. If made an hour or so in advance, it can be inverted on the serving platter, and left with the cake pan over it, to keep it warm. Otherwise is can be rewarmed in a low over, covered with foil. Or enjoyed at room temperature.
Storage: The cake can be made up to two days in advance, although it is best the day it’s made. To freeze it, wrap it securely in plastic wrap; it can be frozen for one to two months.