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Leiths Advent - DEC 10 - Steven Carter-Bailey's Bananas Foster Cake

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Leiths Advent - DEC 10 - Steven Carter-Bailey's Bananas Foster Cake

Today we have a real treat for you. GBBO finalist, Steven Carter-Bailey, was with us last week guiding a very excited class as they baked and decorated their own show-stopping Christmas cakes. Fortunately, the pressure of Paul Hollywood's watchful eye wasn't looming over them! For the 10th day of our advent series, Steven has shared his Bananas Foster Cake recipe along with 3 top baking tips.

Steven Carter-Bailey; 3 ways to get evenly baked sponges with a flat top


1. Grease and line the bottom and the sides of your cake tins, even if they are non-stick.

2. Preheat your oven for 30 minutes before baking any cake. It’s wise to use a separate thermometer in your oven to ensure the temperature is correct.

3. Follow the recipe to the letter and do not open the door before at least 25 minutes to avoid sagging.


BANANAS FOSTER CAKE WITH A SPICED WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING

Christmas puddings and cakes are a staple at this time of year, however these marzipan and rum covered relics don’t always appeal to everyone. Whilst I am happy to gorge on a fruity suet treat, I do always try to offer an alternative cake option to anyone dropping by. May I present, my bananas foster cake with a spiced whipped cream topping. This take on a classic is decedent enough to serve as a dinner party pudding, or just to anyone who wants a little something special, without having to endure the torment of marzipan (I am shameless in my distaste for it!)

The rich mix of butter, sugar and rum cooked bananas are evocative of the high end eateries of New Orleans, where the original recipe was created. Leave the rum out if it’s not for you or your guests.


INGREDIENTS

For the Bananas Foster:

3 large bananas

60g unsalted butter

150g dark brown sugar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

4 tbsp dark rum

For the cake:

100g unsalted butter

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla bean paste

225g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt Grating of nutmeg

160g light brown sugar

For the whipped cream:

300ml double cream

3 heaped dessert spoons of icing sugar

1tsp vanilla extract

Grating of nutmeg

1tsp ground cinnamon

2-3 tbsp rum (optional)


METHOD

Grease and line a standard 2lb loaf tin and preheat the oven to 180°c.

In a large frying pan (or saucepan) over a medium heat, melt the butter, dark brown sugar and cinnamon until they turn to a bubbly syrup. Peel the bananas and cut up however you want (discs or strips). Add these to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, turning halfway through. Add the rum and cook for a further minute – it’s not necessary to flambé the rum, but you can do so if you don’t value your eyebrows!

Use a slotted spoon to remove the bananas and add these to a bowl along with the butter – reserve the cooking syrup. Mash everything together to melt the butter and to cool the bananas, before adding the eggs and beating together.

Weigh out all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and use a whisk to combine them. Pour in the wet ingredients and use the whisk (or spoon) to combine everything, without over mixing.

Pour this into the prepared tin and cook in the middle of the oven for anything from 45 minutes to 1 hour (my oven takes 50 minutes). Apologies for the vague times, but each oven differs. A skewer will come out clean once the cake is done.

Set aside to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning out on to a rack to cool completely. Because of the long cooking time, I find that the outside can have a decent crust, so I wrap mine in cling overnight and use it the next day to make everything a bit softer.

To make the whipped cream, add all the ingredients to a bowl and slowly whip to soft peaks. Store in the fridge for a few days and enjoy spread over the cake or on any festive treat.

Steven Carter-Bailey

Author: Steven Carter-Bailey

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