Thursday, September 2, 2010

Baking with Bakertan - Going Bananas Over Chocolate

Good day folks! Thank you for tuning in to Baking with Bakertan =]. Today, Bakertan is going to bake a Banana Chocolate Cake.

First of all, we need some bananas. Make sure you are using overripe bananas. Notice the black spots on the bananas? This is an indication that the bananas are starting to over-ripen. Overripe bananas are sweeter and have a much stronger flavour. I am using Del Monte since they are easily available from supermarkets.

Next, we need to line the loaf tin. Cut out a rectangular piece of baking/parchment paper such that the width of the paper fits the length of the loaf pan. The length of the paper has to be long enough so that there will be excess paper jutting out when pressed to fit into the tin.

Remove the paper and oil the loaf tin lightly either with softened/melted butter or vegetable oil. Press the paper back into the tin so that it adheres itself nicely.

Meanwhile, sift the self-raising flour and the baking powder into a large bowl. Use a wire whisk to mix the dry ingredients, ensuring that they are uniformly distributed.

At the same time, place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Fill a saucer with water and place the heatproof bowl over the saucer so that the bowl is sitting on the saucer without coming in contact with the water. This setup is known as a double boiler. (Oops! Bakertan forgot to take pictures on melting chocolate). Bring the water in the saucer to a low simmer (low heat please) and melt the chocolates, stiring the chocolate occasionally. Leave the melted chocolate to cool.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

Tip the softened butter and caster sugar into a mixing bowl. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, as explained in How to Cream Butter. Once the butter is well creamed, add the eggs one by one and continue beating on medium low speed, ensuring that each egg is incorporated before adding the next. Notice that the colour of the egg-butter mixture (picture on right) has a slight yellowish hue compared to the off-white colour of the creamed butter (picture on left).

In a medium bowl, mash the overripe bananas using a potato masher until you get banana puree. Alternative, you can do it using the back of two forks.

Add the mashed bananas/banana puree to the egg-butter mixture in 3 additions and beat on low speed until well-combined. The mixture may curdle/separate when the banana puree is added (The curdling may cause the banana loaf to become dense, but it is perfectly alright. It still taste great). This is normal and will be alright when the flour is added in.  

To complete the batter, sift the flour mixture into the banana-egg-butter mixture in two batches. Beat the batter on medium-low speed to incorporate the flour. After the first batch of flour is absorbed, give it a further beating of 10 seconds and sift in the second batch. Once the second batch of flour is absorbed, scrape the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl to incorporate loose flour. Beat the batter for 20 seconds to obtain a smooth batter.

Now that the batter is done, we need to do the layering. First, scoop 1/4 of the cake batter into the loaf tin and level the surface.  

Use a spoon and drizzle 1/3 of the melted chocolate randomly or evenly (your choice) over the cake batter.

Scoop another 1/4 of the cake batter to cover the melted chocolate. Repeat the layering of cake batter alternating with melted chocolate until all the cake batter and melted chocolate are used up. The batter should fill up to 4/5 the height of the tin.  

Place the loaf tin onto a baking tray and place them in the oven, to catch any overflow of batter if any. (just in case) Bake the cake at 180 degrees C for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Start checking for doneness after 1 hour by inserting a wooden/metal skewer into the centre of the cake. It should come oout clean when the cake is done (it is ok to have some crumbs sticking to the skewer, but not wet uncooked batter). The top skin should be nicely browned after 1 hour. Place a piece of aluminium foil over the loaf tin to prevent the surface from over-browning and continue baking until the cake is done.

Tada....A nice chocolate banana cake is done! Allow the cake to cool in the loaf tin for 15 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack. Sit back and enjoy your banana chocolate cake with a nice cup of tea. Thats all for today folks! Cya and stay tuned to Baking with Bakertan.


While the cake was baking, the smell permeated the entire house. I can swear those walking past the common corridor can sniff it. This happens when you make a banana cake. Free aroma therapy while waiting for the cake to be done.

I have lost count of the number of times I have used this recipe. By far, this is my best attempt, probably because I increased the proportion of bananas. It worked brilliantly as the banana flavour had a strong presence without being overtaken by the taste of the rich melted dark chocolate. While this version of the banana chocolate cake is more banana-ish, there is the other version which is more chocolatey in nature. One such recipe is the Cocoa Banana Bread (if my memory served me correctly; I do not own a copy of the book) in Dorie Greenspan's Baking: From My Home to Yourswhich baking enthusiasts should be familiar with. A similar chocolate banana cake can be found from Jess Kitchen.


Banana Chocolate Cake (Recipe adapted Chocolate: 70 of the Best Recipes by Hamlyn)
Serving size: 10 slices
Texture: Moist, moderately dense with a prominent banana fragrance layered with rich semisweet chocolate with the consistency of a good chocolate frosting.
Equipment and Materials:
1) Stand electric beater/ handheld electric beater or wooden spoon
2) Measuring spoon set
3) Spatula
4) Mixing bowls (one of which is heatproof)
5) Wire rack
6) 9 x 5 inch loaf tin
7) Flour sieve
8) Parchment/baking paper
9) Brush for oiling pan
10) Weighing scale

Cake Batter:
190g unsalted butter, softened
285 - 300g mashed bananas ( 2 1/2 overripe bananas)
160g castor sugar
150g eggs (about 3 55g eggs)
240g self raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
175g chocolate, melted (55-60% cocoa)

Making the banana chocolate cake:
Follow instructions as above.

1) Take care not to overheat the chocolate, it will cause the chocolate to 'burn'/become dry/ thicken and become lumpy .
2) Do not allow any water/moisture/steam to come into contact with the melted chocolate. It will cause the chocolate to seize/become grainy.
3) Reduce bananas to 230g for a more buttery cake. The baking time will be reduced as a result of the lesser amount of liquid).


  1. Errr... bakertan,
    I think it's overheating chocolate that will cause it to be grainy, unless you're whipping chocolate ganache, as overwhipping (not overstirring) will cause the ganache to be grainy.

    The chocolate layers look really good and thank you for the effort in showing all the steps, looks really good.

  2. Wow.. another delicious bake. *thumbs up* *^_^*

  3. hi bakertan! great blog and that cake looks so awesome. (:

  4. Hmmm... my 18 months old toddler went 'na na na' the moment he saw the picture of the banana! :) Thanks for sharing the recipe! Will keep it in my list to try in future!

  5. Love the streaky chocolate in the cake.
    Coincidentally, I baked a banana cake too. Too lazy to post it.

  6. adding the chocolate layers make it better hor..looks like zebra cake haha.. Yup, if the chocolate is grainy, it could be overheated or came in contact with water. 30 secs on microwave and stir and repeat.

  7. this is good bakertan! looks so moist and bananaish!! and ur instructions are very clear hehe must try it soon but i got alot of recipes lining up how to finish them!!! ahh i tink i need to go bonkers again lets see whether am i able to bake 3 in half a day =p

  8. Banana and chocolate, that's is a great combo for me. This cake looks really good!

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. Hi Wendy,

    I think I read the over-stirring part from a book, or I might have remembered incorrectly and the thought stuck to my mind ever since, oops! I checked with other books and most of them do not mention about over-stirring, only one google source says it may cause the chocolate to lose its shine. I have changed it. thanks for reminding =]


    Hi Cathy,

    Thank you! Many thumbs up to your bakes too =]


    Hi Hannah,

    thanks alot for your kind words =]


    Hi full-time-mummy,

    Your boy is so cute lar! I saw your baked wings and muffins. pretty good!


    Hi busygran,

    do post your banana cake. Will want to see your post on it =]


  11. Hi Swee San,

    Ya, I prefer to layer it rather than marble it. I suck at marbling, haha. Thanks for the reminder/insight and tips, I have made changes =].

    I seldom remedy my seized chocolate. Normally will throw them away. Most of the time its my ganache that become grainy, which can be quite frustrating.


    Hi Jess,

    haha thanks alot. this cake is the dense kind. I will want to do the soft fluffy kind next time. take your time. I have alot of recipes to clear too. but I don't like to rush. At the most, I will bake only 2 cakes/bakes on either sat or sun.


    Hi Grace,

    this is a great combo for me too. Both flavours are fine on their own but when the powers combine, its superb!

  12. Banana and chocolate is one of my all-time favourite combis. It can never go wrong! This cake looks so simple to make yet so delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

  13. Sure been a long time I last had a banana chocolate cake. Yours look yummy.

  14. I've baked banana cakes, banana walnut cakes and banana choc chip cakes, but never a banana chocolate cake! This looks like a satisfying cake to bake and eat. Nice... Thanks for sharing the step by step too!

  15. ZY, the cake looks good. I just baked chocolate banana muffin too heeheehee...

  16. I'm no expert here but I've tried using Delmonte and local bananas, I find the latter gives better flavours to cakes and muffins.

  17. awesome step by step photos! and your cake looks delicious! PS: is that marble tabletop? I'm eyeing at!

  18. Hi Allie,

    Banana and chocolate is one of my favourite combo too for cakes especially =]


    Hi Edith,

    thanks for the kind words =].


    Hi Jane,

    Thanks! my brother even asked me why i did not put in choc chips for this cake. lol. I have yet to try a banana walnut cake.


    Hi Jess,

    haha what a coincidence.. look forward to your post on banana muffins =]


    Hi blessed homemaker,

    thanks for the tips! I read from a book that smaller sized varieties of bananas give a much better flavour. not sure if it is the local version you mentioned.


    Hi faithy,

    thanks =] yup, thats my marble dining table which I always use for as my baking arena, lol

  19. Is there anything better than chocolate and bananas? Plus the bonus of smelling that bread baking. Thanks.

    Plan B

  20. Looks like a success to me! i'll try out your recipe cause i love banana cakes, i used to hate them when i was young, i mean like 5 years old.

    Thanks for the step by step photos!


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Thank you and have a nice day! Cheers =]

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