Banana Crunch Cake / Welcome Home Marine

We have a MARINE in the family! Welcome home and Congratulations Russell for completing your initial training! Glad to have you back for a brief while.

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Here he is pictured with my mother in law. So grown up! When I started dating his brother, Russell was in middle school! He exclaims that he loves the Marines and cannot wait to start further training.

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Also one of him and my father in law at the same age:)

We had a small family bash for him today before he goes back to the next phase of training. I know Russell has a fondness for food, and while he would much prefer pie over cake, I figured I couldn’t go wrong with banana cake. ( As long as it didn’t have raisins!) I knew I was on the right track when I arrived to find his mother taking a hummingbird cake out of the oven ( also banana). This is my first time dabbling in whole grain baking. I was worried that the cake would have a dry grainy feel but it was sooo moist. I really suggest baking this cake by weighing ingredients. Especially because it calls for using two different flours. Although I suspect you can go with just one type, you won’t be sorry for adding the second. The topping made a wonderful addition. It got rave reviews ( and packed a whole grain punch at 22 grams a serving!) Happy baking!

Banana Crunch Cake

Yield: one 8 inch square pan ( it could easily be doubled to a 9×13)
Baking temperature: 350F
Baking time: 40-45 minutes

Cake:
4 7/8 ounces (1 cup) sorghum flour – I used Bob’s Red Mill- *see note at bottom
4 ounces ( 1 cup) whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces ( 1 stick or 1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
5 ounces ( 2/3 cup) packed brown sugar – it can be light or dark
2 large eggs
8 ounces (1 cup) mashed bananas – 2-3 medium- I used 3
4 ounces ( 1/2 cup) plain yogurt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 7/8 ounces ( 1/2 cup) chopped walnut or pecans – I used a combo
6 ounces ( 1 cup ) chocolate chips or toffee chips – I used Heath bar chips *optional*

*Flour note: I realize sorghum flour is quite out of the ordinary for most of you…. the choice here is really yours. I like sorghum because it gives a depth of sweetness, but feel free to use any other kind. In the baking isle of your major supermarket ( excluding Walmart although they have been getting better) you should be able to find alternate flours. There is a big push for these on the gluten free and low carb scenes. The recipe originally suggested oat flour. Alternately, you can go ahead and just add the volume to the whole wheat flour. If you do choose an alternate flour besides sorghum check it out here for the weight change( all flours weigh differently) or just go with the one cup measurement. King Arthur Ingredient Weight List
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Topping:
2 5/8 ounces ( 3/4 cup) old fashioned rolled oats – not quick!
2 1/2 ounces (1/3 cup) packed brown sugar – light or dark
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 ounce ( 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
1 ounce (1/4 cup) chopped pecans and walnuts- again I used a combo
2 ounces (1/3 cup or the rest of the 8 ounce bag) chocolate chips / toffee pieces

To make the cake batter:
– Preheat your oven. Butter and flour a 8 inch square pan. ( Do yourself a favor and grab some Bakers Joy or Pillsbury baking spray- no more stray flour)
– In a medium bowl whisk together the sorghum flour, the whole wheat flour, baking soda, and salt.
– In a second medium bowl mix the vanilla extract, the plain yogurt, and the bananas
– In a large bowl or in the bowl of your stand mixer cream the butter then gradually add the sugar.
– Beat in the eggs one at a time- make sure you scrape the bottom and sides of your bowl in between.
– Mix in about half of your flour mixture. Once incorporated, add the banana mixture. Mix until combined.
– Add the second half of the flour mixture along with the nuts and the chips – if using. Mix until batter is evenly moistened. Then turn into the baking pan.

To make the crunch topping:
– In a medium bowl combine the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Mix until evenly combined.
– Pour in the melted butter and continue mixing until a large crumb forms. Add the nuts and sprinkle over cake.

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Bake for 40 -45 minutes or until a cake tester is inserted comes out fairly clean. Remove cake from oven and place on cooling rack. Sprinkle on the remaining chips or toffee pieces if using. Let cool for 20 minutes. If serving warm, vanilla ice cream or whipped cream would make a great addition. If serving cool perhaps some sliced strawberries on the side? :).

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– Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking . Great book. ( Your pretty much safe with anything from King Arthur Flour.) This book was recently featured on Cooking Light Magazine’s “Top 100 cookbooks of the last 25 years”.

Dream. BAKE. Believe.
Love, Steffie

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cindy
    Mar 12, 2012 @ 11:31:19

    I think you should have saved some for your dad, you know how much he likes bananas!!

    Reply

  2. Tina
    Mar 12, 2012 @ 22:18:30

    Hey Steffe, I love bananas & crunch so I know I would have loved it. I just wish I could have been there

    Reply

  3. CHRIS
    Mar 13, 2012 @ 16:30:00

    READY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

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