This cake is bananas…B-A-N-A-N-A-S!

Test Kitchen Date: January 22, 2014

By: Stephanie Smith

Last week was my first time ever attending the Sargent Choice Test Kitchen after being at BU for three and half years. I remember the first time I met Karen Jacobs during freshmen year and heard about her test kitchen, I wanted to attend so badly. But life caught up with me (mostly the workload that I certainly wasn’t prepared for) and I never dipped my toes in the test kitchen’s waters.

So last week, when I was told that I would be going to my first test kitchen and making a banana cake, I was thrilled and so excited to see what all the fuss was about when people spoke of Karen Jacobs and her test kitchen.

I was immediately greeted by fellow classmates that were just as excited as I was, to be surrounded by friendly faces ready to bake. I met people from different colleges throughout BU, people coming from all over the country, and even some students who were in the U.S. for the first time. After a few minutes of chatting and getting to know one another with a cup of tea in hand, everyone got to work.

Since we were quadrupling the recipe (to feed all of our hungry bellies, and the security guards downstairs) there were many hands on deck–cracking eggs, mashing bananas, measuring ingredients, beating mixtures, and mixing the batter until their arms felt like jell-o.


The recipe turned out to be a hit! One that would get people coming back for seconds, thirds, and maybe even a fourth time. Around the Apples-to-Apples table, where we played while waiting for the cake to bake, thumbs shot up into the air with approval, as everyone’s first bite was delicious.


 You may be thinking, but how was the recipe so different than a banana bread? Well, it was definitely different! It was in fact, “cakier,” as one might assume by the title. The cakes were topped with a low-fat cream cheese frosting that added the perfect amount of sweetness. This too made the dessert seem more like a cake than a bread.


We did make one slight change to the second batch of two cakes. We decided to add an extra cup of mashed bananas, after having had already mashed a few extras. Those cakes were much more moist and preferred by many, including myself! So, if you’re feeling up to a little extra arm workout to mash an extra banana or two, go for it!

We would definitely advise you to keep an eye on the time in the oven. After baking for the recommended 25 minutes, most of the cakes needed a bit more time in the oven to continue to cook through and firm up. But, it does depend on the taste that you’re looking for. Some people enjoyed the cakes that were a little gooier! Just be sure to stick a toothpick in the center of the cake to test whether or not they are done to your liking and take them out of the oven whenever you feel like the texture is perfect for you!


Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe adapted from Moosewood Restaurant
Yields 24 servings

Banana Cake Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3-4)

Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
4 ounces light cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions for cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Lightly grease 12x9x2-inch baking pan.
3. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar.
4. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth and creamy.
5. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
6. Add half of the dry mixture to the sugar mixture and beat until smooth.
7. Add the mashed banana and mix.
8. Add the remaining flour mixture and beat until smooth.
9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until golden brown and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Allow to cool before frosting.

Directions for frosting:
1. Beat the butter and cream cheese in a large mixing bowl until smooth.
2. Add the confectioner’s sugar, one cup at a time and beat until smooth.
3. Add the vanilla and beat to incorporate.
4. Spread frosting over cake in thin layer.


Nutrition Facts for one square:
Calories: 190, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Protein: 3g, Carbohydrates: 29g, Fiber: 1g

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One Comment

İstanbul satılık daireler posted on May 16, 2023 at 9:22 pm

It was a nice, informative and educational post, thank you

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