I Can Do This a.k.a. Chocolate Chip Banana Cake

2 Apr

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake | Adventures of a Hungry Redhead
I’ve been a bad blogger. Bad, bad blogger. Bad! You guys got hosed on March, I mean seriously; stuffed shells and that was it. Not even any Fired Up Fridays. WTF Red?

What’s the excuse? You knew there was going to be an excuse. Well, here’s the thing: I sort of left my perfectly good job to start my own business and I packed up and moved to the other side of town. How scandalous! You’d think some awful man had ruined my life and terrible boss had crushed my dreams, and I was Anne Hathaway, Emma Stone, Rachel McAdams or Reese Witherspoon out to show everyone that I could make it on my own! It was disappointingly far less dramatic. Though there was an awesome soundtrack (Tegan & Sara) and a quirky sidekick (that’d be you Henn).

I think I surprised a lot of people by going off on my own, myself included. The closest thing I have to a business education is the Econ 101 class I was required to take in college. But honestly, it’s been on my mind for quite a while now. I struggle with finding a work/life balance. When I enjoy something, I pour all my energy into it; when I don’t, I put it off until the last minute and then stress about it until my head explodes. For a long time there’s been less enjoyment and more stressing. One of my favorite sayings is “if you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” Well guess what? I effing changed it. All of it.

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake | Adventures of a Hungry Redhead
My experience making this Banana Chocolate Chip Cake mirrors my experience starting my own business. I had my eye on it for awhile, kept saying I was going to make it the next time I had ripe bananas, and kept wussing out because I knew it wouldn’t be easy and didn’t want to risk failure.

Finally, I made the jump. I had all of the ingredients to do it right and then some. I was already thinking about showing this bad boy off before I’d even softened the butter. I thought I was prepared and ready to go. The two cakes came out of the oven a perfect golden brown, smelling delicious and begging to be sliced in half to make a perfectly decedent four-layer cake. Then, I discovered I’d made a rookie mistake: I didn’t put parchment down in the pans. I flipped one pan over to pop the cake out and a giant chunk stuck to the bottom, leaving a gaping hole in one of the two layers. I was shocked and heartbroken, and yes, those emotions are very real in the art of cake making, okay.

I was ready to throw it all away. Well, I was ready to eat half of the cake chunks in my misery and then throw it away. But then I noticed how the chunk stuck to the pan was like a jigsaw piece with the broken layer its perfect match, and I saw the bowl of fresh cream cheese icing I’d just whipped up and the brand new spatula I’d bought for the task, and the bright shiny cake pedestal waiting for it’s cake… dammit. I had to make this work.I did NOT just spend all this time, energy and money into making everything I needed for a beautiful cake, just to give up and throw it in the trash.

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake | Adventures of a Hungry Redhead
I plopped the broken layer, hole side up, on the cake pedestal, then I used the cream cheese icing like spackle. I dotted several globs on the hole, scraped the chunk stuck in the pan off in the largest piece I could and set it down into the hole now filled with icing. I scraped some more bits out of the pan to squish into some remaining holes and completely covered the top with frosting. Hole? What hole? On went the second layer and another full coat of cream cheese icing and BAM! there was it was: a chocolate chip banana cake. I knew it wasn’t perfect. It wasn’t the gorgeous, symmetrical, four-layer beauty I had envisioned, but I’m sure the only person who saw it that way was me.

Even when you cut into it, the slices did not reveal the secret.

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake | Adventures of a Hungry Redhead
The recipe states that this is “not banana bread with frosting,” that it’s fluffier and moister, but I must make a really fluffy and moist banana bread, because I personally would classify it as a giant banana bread with frosting. Like there’s anything wrong with that?

I should have known better about the parchment paper, and I could have divided the batter more evenly between the two pans. The bananas could have been a bit more ripe, but you know what? This was still a damn good cake.

That is what I hope my business will be like. I’m an OCD perfectionist about a lot of things, which means I’m constantly disappointed in myself, but I hope that in this giant undertaking, I can take a step back, smile, and say ‘I did it.’

Layer Cake Media
Thank you for your love and patience,


Chocolate Chip Banana Cake
by Baker’s Royale


Cake (adapted from All Recipes)

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup ripe bananas, mashed (about 3 large bananas)
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cup mini chocolate cups

Cream Cheese Frosting

11/2 cups unsalted butter (2 1/2 sticks)
1 8oz. cream cheese
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups of confectioner sugar

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour or add parchment circles to two 8-inch round pans.

Place flour, baking soda and salt into a bowl and whisk to combine; set aside.

Combine butter, white sugar and brown sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at time and beat until combined. Add bananas and mix. Add flour mixture in three parts alternately with the buttermilk into the mixture. Stir in mini chocolate chips. Pour batter evenly between the two prepared pans.

Bake in oven for about 40 minutes or until cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow cakes to cool.

To make frosting: add butter and cream cheese in a bowl and mix until light and fluffy. Add in vanilla extract and mix to combine. Add confectioner sugar one cup at a time and mix until combined. Ice your cake, spackling holes as necessary.

One Response to “I Can Do This a.k.a. Chocolate Chip Banana Cake”

  1. Michele April 3, 2013 at 9:42 am #

    Awesome post, even more awesome life adventure! glad to share it:)

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