Saturday, January 31, 2009
Banana Coconut Rum Cake
When I first bought my Nick Malgieri The Modern Baker book there were a few recipes that jumped out at me immediately, recipes that I knew I would have to make sooner rather than later, and this was definitely one of them. One simple cake combining three of my favorites: coconut, banana, and rum -- yes, this was on the short list.
The cake is banana flavored with dense, moist cake that has a lot of good banana flavor going on. There is rum in the cake itself, but only a tablespoon for all the batter and I didn't notice a lot of rum flavor in the cake itself. The frosting is a basic whipped cream frosting with another tablespoon of rum, but you couldn't really taste it there either. After frosting the cake you just throw some coconut on it and you're good to go.
The advantage of whipped cream frosting is that it mixes up quickly, goes on easily and in general looks pretty good with a minimal effort. The disadvantage is if it gets too hot it tends to melt and run which means freeing up room in the fridge to store the sucker. The other disadvantage is that the whipped cream frosting is so soft and slick that it's kind of difficult to cut the cake since the cake itself is so dense -- you end up smooshing the cake layers together and squeezing the frosting out from the middle of the cake. It still tastes good of course, but it's not the easiest thing to keep pretty as you're eating it.
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
12 tbsp (1 1/2 sticks0 unsalted butter, softened
2/3 granulated sugar
1/3 firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 cup mashed banana (2 large or 3 medium)
2/3 cup milk
1 tbsp dark rum
Whipped Cream Frosting
2 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp dark rum
2 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
Preheat oven to 350. Spray two 9x2 inch round cake pans with cooking spray.
In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients and set aside.
In the bowl of a large mixer cream together the butter and sugars, 2 to 3 minutes until lightened in color. Add the vanilla and the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
In another medium bowl combine the well-mashed bananas with the milk and rum.
Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter/sugar/egg mixture in the mixer then 1/3 of the banana/milk mixture. Alternate between the two until the flour and banana mixtures are thoroughly mixed in.
Divide the batter between the cake pans and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean and the edges look set. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 5 minutes, then turn them out on a cooling rack and let them cool completely.
When you are ready to frost them, whip the whipping cream with the sugar and rum until it is the consistency of frosting. Spread half onto the bottom cake layer, top with the other cake layer and spread the frosting on. Sprinkle the coconut on the top of the cake and press it against the sides to get it to stick.
Keep the cake cool, or the cream might melt.