I write this post as a pile of tissues lies by my side and my nose resembles that of Rudolph’s. In other words, I’ve got a terrible cold..for the second time in a row! I seriously had just recovered from 2 weeks of acute bronchitis, where I had a horrible cough and had lost my voice. Then, just as I was starting to feel myself again, I felt my throat start to itch with that foreboding sensation that can only be recognized as the first sign of a cold. Sure enough, I woke up to a runny nose and some serious congestion. I wish I could say I was surprised, but I can’t. This is what happens to me. I don’t get sick, but when I do, I get SICK. I tell you all this just to say that the fact that I made this chocolate banana crumb cake and actually got some photos out of it was amazing.
Halfway through the cake baking, I couldn’t handle the itchy throat situation anymore so I downed some cold syrup. Problem was that this was maximum relief cold syrup that was meant to be taken at night. Yeah. So when the timer went off for this lovely cake, it took me a full 30 seconds to realize the oven was beeping. And then, I haphazardly grabbed my camera and started snapping away, not sure if the photos were blurry, crooked, or if the lighting was even ok. I then literally ditched the cake and went straight to my bed to doze off for a good 2 1/2 hours. So, as I uploaded these photos onto the computer, I wondered if there’d be any photos that were actually usable, and I was relieved to find some. One of the photos, not pictured here, was absolutely ridiculous and was right near the end of my photo session where I’m pretty sure I was walking away as I took it.
All this said, this cake is divine. Even with all my senses inhibited, the sweet banana and chocolate flavors shined through; the two are just an irresistible combination. The chocolate chips that are placed on top seep down and melt into the surface of the banana cake. That, paired with the crunchy, brown sugar topping is the perfect play on varying textures. You’ve got the super moist cake, which if you’ve made decent banana bread, you can completely imagine, and then you’ve got the crunchy topping with the crumbled streusel and almonds. This is why I love this cake even more than I love banana bread, which I didn’t think was possible. Banana bread, even with walnuts embedded throughout, tends to leave a little something to be desired in terms of texture. I like when my food has varying textures as I think it makes the whole dish feel complete. You can make this chocolate banana crumb cake in a pie dish like I did, or in a square/rectangular baking pan. I just wish I hadn’t been sick so I could share this cake with all my family and friends. I have a feeling no one will want to accept a slice of this cake from me once they take a look at me, no matter how delicious looking this cake is!
- 1/2 c unsalted butter, (1 stick)
- 3/4 c granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 c sour cream
- 1 1/2 c mashed bananas, about 4 to 5 ripe bananas
- 1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
for the streusel
- 3/4 c brown sugar
- 1/2 c all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 c unsalted butter, softened and cubed
- 6 oz of chocolate chips
- 2 tbsp to 3 shaved almonds
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch pie pan or 8-inch baking pan with baking spray. If you're going to be removing the cake from the pan, fit a long piece of parchment paper in the pan, with some of the parchment paper hanging off of the edges of the pan.
- Create the cake by creaming the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy; about 2 minutes. Add in the egg, vanilla, and sour cream on low speed. Add the mashed bananas and mix just until combined; cake may look lumpy and curdled - thats perfectly fine.
- Sift the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together before adding to the wet ingredients. Mix until everything has been incorporated. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and use a spatula to even the batter out in the pan.
- To create the streusel topping, whisk the sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt together to combine. Drop in the butter and use your fingers to rub the butter into the dry ingredients and create a crumble. Stir in the chocolate chips before evenly distributing this mixture all over the top of the cake. Garnish with some shaved almonds all over the top.
- Bake the cake for 45 to 50 minutes on a center rack in your oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with little to no crumbs. Let the cake rest in the pan until it's just warm. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
adapted from Barefoot Contessa