Magnolia’s Banana Cake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

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For my birthday a few weeks ago, my good friend Jill got me Magnolia bakery’s classic cookbook (along with some really pretty sprinkles.) I was so happy to have received it (and super impressed that somehow she knew that I wanted it before I even knew myself.) Magnolia’s is a fantastic bakery in New York with several locations. Their signature items are their cupcakes and their banana pudding. I’ve enjoyed baking my way through the cookbook. This cake is the best new-to-me recipe that I’ve baked using the cookbook.

The cake is a fantastic use of bananas and the sweet tender cake complements the frosting perfectly. It brings bananas back to life in a confection that is a lot more exciting and satisfying than your average banana bread. The frosting is unique (and easy to make!) in that it’s mostly cream cheese and white chocolate.The frosting’s tangy-sweet flavor is a great match for the sweet cake. The cake ages well-it was sublime one day and two days after I made it–since the flavor improves over time.

This is one of the best cakes that I’ve had, and although it’s not available in Magnolia’s bakeries in NYC, it can be available in your kitchen!

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Banana Cake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

from Magnolia Bakery

Cake:

3 cups cake flour (not self-rising)

1 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

2 cups sugar

3 large eggs, at room temperature

1 1/2 cups mashed very ripe bananas

6 tablespoons buttermilk

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Frosting

1 pound (two 8-ounce packages) cream cheese, softened

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 tsp vanilla extract

8 oz white chocolate (such as Lindt–do not use baking chocolate like Callebaut), melted and cooled to lukewarm temperature

For garnish:

3/4 cup chopped walnuts or walnut halves

For the cake:

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Grease and lightly flour two 9x 2-inch round cake pans, then line the bottoms with waxed paper.

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Set aside.

In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the bananas. Add half of the dry ingredients, mixing until well incorporated, then add the buttermilk and vanilla, and then the second half of the dry ingredients, mixing well. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Let the layers cool in their pans for 1 hour. Remove from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack.

When the cake has cooled, apply the frosting between the layers, and then on the top and sides of the cake. Garnish with walnuts as desired. Enjoy! 🙂

For the frosting:

In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat well. Add the melted chocolate and beat well. Use immediately or store, covered, at room temperature for up to 4 hours.

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