My husband loves banana walnut cupcakes. I made them once, a few years ago and had to make them again, just for him, a couple of days later. That time I added chopped walnuts over the cream cheese frosting swirls because he couldn’t get enough of the crunchiness these added. But, let’s be honest. Banana walnut anything, tastes incredible but it doesn’t look that great. The colors developed from these ingredients are earthy and, #sorrynotsorry, kinda boring. So, when he
demanded suggested this combination I wasn’t thrilled.
I thought of coloring the frosting and decorating the top and sides of the cake with those pretty flowers. I even considered baking meringues and macarons to make it look trendy and cute. But I really didn’t have that much time to play with it, especially, going thru the 4 months sleep regression with our baby so, I decided to do something feminine, yet simple: a semi naked cake.
I knew it would be a little challenging because, cream cheese frosting is not as sturdy as buttercream or ganache to stack a cake. Thank god for cold winters! I gave it a try. Considering I’m not an experienced baker and haven’t made a semi naked cake before, I turned out great. The cake was light for a banana walnut cake and I chose to do 3 6″ instead of a wider cake, to give it more elegance.
When I told him he needed to take 2/3 of it to work and give it away he wasn’t very happy but, he did it when I promised to make him a chocolate cream cheese blueberry poke cake next week 😀
Watch Video Recipe:
2½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
3 eggs- room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ cup buttermilk- room temperature
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
¾ cup chopped walnuts
Cream Cheese Frosting
12 oz cream cheese, softened
8 oz butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
4 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
- Preheat over to 375°F. Prepare your cake tins by buttering, dusting with flour and lining the bottoms with a parchment circle. Set aside. (I used 3- 6″ pans for this cake, thinner layer in an 8 or 9 inch pan would work too.)
- In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla and then the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the buttermilk and bananas until well combined.
- In a smaller bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Add them to the batter and beat on low, mixing until almost combined, finishing off by adding the walnuts and mixing by hand, making sure to not over-mix the batter.
- Divide batter evenly among the 3 tins, and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool before for 5 minutes removing from pans. Let cool completely before frosting.
- Cream together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the vanilla, salt, and the powdered sugar, a little at a time until the frosting is smooth and creamy. Add more powdered sugar if you want a more stiff-textured frosting.