Yes, banana cake has been tried and tested since the start of quarantine, inspiring the hashtag #quaranbaking, and yet, one can never truly tire of it because it's a classic, no matter how much it's reinvented or turned into a baking project du jour, like sourdough or focaccia bread, or chocolate chip cookies, or apple pie (more on this later).
I've tried using milk with cake dough, and while it softened the cake texture pre-and post-baking, the dough was still slightly crumbly and didn't have the oomph I was looking for. Thankfully, yogurt solved that. Not only does it soften the cake texture, it also gives the banana cake both sweetness and tang, as well as an incredibly moist flavour, almost similar to the inside of a mooncake, minus the salted egg.
When making this banana yogurt cake, you can skip the walnuts if you are or a family member is allergic to nuts, but if not, I highly recommend it to pair the tangy sweetness. Toss in some dark chocolate chips and you're all set.
Baking time: 1 hour and 5 minutes
Yields: 1 large loaf, 2 medium loaves or 3 small loaves
120 ml olive oil
3/4 cup coco sugar
3 large eggs
2 ripe bananas (the darker, the better, so it’s easier to mash)
1 cup all-purpose flour
150 ml natural yogurt or Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
1. Whisk together olive oil and sugar in a large bowl. Crack eggs, one at a time, into the bowl, while continuing to whisk. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius.
2. Stir in flour and cinnamon powder. Gently fold into wet mixture until everything is incorporated.
3. In another bowl, peel, slice and mash bananas with a fork. Fold into the cake mixture. Add chocolate chips and walnuts.
4. Pour into loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes. Then reverse pan and bake for another 15 minutes until it becomes a gorgeous dark brown colour. Leave cake in the pan to cool, then flip to remove. Cut into slices and serve on dessert plates.
Those gorgeous rise and cracks always get me
Side view of the baked banana yogurt cakes. I used two medium rectangular pans.
See what I mean about a mooncake-like filling? Yogurt gives density and incredible moistness to the cake. The chocolate chip cookies and walnuts counterbalance the tangy sweetness.