Sunday, October 26, 2014

Caramelized Banana Butter Cake

This cake is bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S.

My husband loves bananas. Banana cream pie... peanut butter, Nutella and banana sandwiches... Bananas Foster... just plain old bananas... I could keep going on and on...

I made this creation especially for him and it's delicious! Not to mention super easy. While homemade cakes are fabulous (as is the feeling of accomplishment that comes along with completing one), boxed cake is just as wonderful and takes so much less effort.

This is a perfect last minute dessert to make for a dinner party. It looks (sorta) fancy and tastes amazing... you wouldn't even know it's from a box! (shhhh... it'll be out little secret!)

So here's how we did the banana cake dance...

I prepared an 9x13 inch sheet cake using any butter cake mix. Pillsbury happens to be my favorite...


And after... 
While I let the cake completely cool, I made some whipped cream frosting (using this yummy recipe from one of my fave food websites, Food 52). Then I stuck it in the fridge while I started the fun part of the recipe... the 'naners!

First we slice up 3 ripe bananas (but not too ripe or else they'll get really mushy when you cook 'em).

Then we melt some butter in a saute pan.

Once the butter is melted, add your brown sugar and stir until combined. Then add the bananas and a splash of Frangelico to the party ('cause what would a party be without some booze?)

Cook the banana mixture on medium heat until it comes to a slow boil. Stir for five minutes or so, then turn off the heat.

Let your bananas completely cool. I promise you, if you don't let them totally cool you'll be really sad... the whipped cream will melt and the bananas will begin sliding all over the place. And then no pretty cake for you :(

Once they're cool, begin assembling your cake. First ice the whole thing.

And then top it off with the yummy bananas.

There you have it! Told you it was easy!

Carmelized Banana Butter Cake

Makes 1 9-inch cake 

For the cake... 
1 box vanilla golden butter cake mix (check back of box for additional ingredients)

For the icing... 
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the bananas... 
3 ripe bananas
1 stick stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon Frangelico
  1. Make your cake mix according to directions on back of box for a 9x13 inch sheet cake. Let cool completely. 
  2. Mix your whip cream icing according to the directions here on Food 52's website. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to assemble cake. 
  3. To make your bananas, begin by slicing up three bananas into quarter-of-an-inch slices. 
  4. Melt one stick of butter in a sauté pan over medium-low heat. Once butter is melted, add brown sugar and stir until combined. Add bananas and frangelico and bring to a slow boil. Stir for 3-5 minutes and remove from heat. Allow banana mixture to cool completely.
  5. To assemble the cake, start by icing the entire sheet. The top with banana mixture. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Running and Things

Hello and happy Monday!

I had this grand (and rather ambitious) plan to post two new recipes these past two weeks, but unfortunately I failed. Yesterday I spent the day concocting a recipe for caramelized banana butter cake which turned out to be amazing... but I have one teeny tiny change to make before posting, so it'll be up next weekend!

In the meantime, check out last week's recipe for fried broccoli here... It'll forever change the way you view your veggies (ok, maybe I'm exaggerating a little...)

In other news, Anthony and I have been spending lots of time running lately. The Annapolis Running Festival is creeping up on me, and with only a month left to train I need to get my butt in gear! On a side note, if you're looking for a fantabulous (and proven!) marathon training program, I highly recommend Hal Higdon's. He has programs for all different levels for both half and full marathons (and they're free!)... You can find them here on his website.

Fun shoes make for fun runs

Seven miles down... 6.1 to go!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Fried Broccoli with Horseradish Cream Sauce

This past August I took a trip to Nashville with some lovely ladies for my friend Drew's bachelorette celebration... we had an absolute blast! Nashville is just an awesome city all around... the people are incredibly friendly, the city is quaint and cheery, and live music greets you at every bend.

Drew's crew posing in front of our 'Sproket Rocket' bicycle tour. I thought this was going to be a leisurely 2-hour 'pedal' tour on a bike that's run on a motor... boy, was I mistaken. I sweat the whole time (but so much fun!)