Banana, maple and pecan cake

Banana, maple and pecan cake
  • Serves icon Serves 12-14
  • Time icon Hands-on time 45 minutes, plus cooling. Oven time 40 minutes

Bake Off’s Kevin Flynn transforms banana cake into something special. Sandwich the layers of rich banana sponge with piped maple buttercream and finish with candied pecans for a showstopper for any event.

For an everyday bake, try our easy banana bread.

Follow Kevin on Instagram @kevinflynnbakes

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
931kcals
Fat
66g (22g saturated)
Protein
9.5g
Carbohydrates
72g (50g sugars)
Fibre
4.1g
Salt
0.2g
Calories
931kcals
Fat
66g (22g saturated)
Protein
9.5g
Carbohydrates
72g (50g sugars)
Fibre
4.1g
Salt
0.2g

Ingredients

  • 300ml vegetable oil, plus extra to grease
  • 200g pecans
  • 4 large ripe bananas (about 400g)
  • 200g soft light brown sugar
  • 100g maple syrup
  • 3 large free-range eggs, lightly beaten
  • 50g natural yogurt
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 200g buckwheat flour
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the buttercream

  • 180g free-range egg whites (from about 5 large eggs)
  • 250g soft light brown sugar
  • 100g maple syrup
  • 500g unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature

For the candied pecans

  • 100g pecans
  • 50g caster sugar

You’ll also need

  • 3 x 20cm round cake tins
  • Piping bag
  • Thermometer

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 170°C fan/gas 5. Grease the cake tins with oil and line with baking paper. Put the 200g pecans in an oven dish in a single layer and toast for 10 minutes, then remove, allow to cool and roughly chop. These will go into the cake batter.
  2. For the candied pecans, toast the 100g pecans in a dry pan over a high heat for a few minutes until they release their aroma, then scatter the 50g sugar over them. Use a wooden spoon to turn the nuts over in the sugar repeatedly until the sugar melts and turns amber. Remove from the heat and scatter over a sheet of baking paper to cool. Once cool, break apart any that have stuck together and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Add the oil, sugar, maple syrup, eggs and yogurt and mix well. In a separate bowl, mix both flours with the bicarb, then add this to the wet ingredients and gently mix until there are no dry patches of flour left. Fold in the toasted pecans, then divide the batter between the 3 cake tins.
  4. Level the tops with a spatula, then bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer pushed into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. To make the buttercream, put the egg whites and 250g sugar in a bowl set over a pan of boiling water, ensuring the bowl isn’t touching the water. Use a balloon whisk or spatula to beat or whisk the mixture constantly until it reads 72°C on a thermometer and the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and use an electric whisk to whisk the mixture until it achieves stiff peaks. Continue to whisk while gradually adding the maple syrup, then whisk at a low speed until the bowl is no longer warm to the touch.
  6. Gradually add the butter in chunks whilst mixing at a medium-high speed. The mixture will get loose and wet, then turn clumpy – but keep going until it becomes light and velvety. This will take about 10 minutes. Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag.
  7. To assemble the cake, pipe a small amount of icing on the base of your serving plate or cake stand and put a sponge on it (this secures it in place). Pipe neat peaks of buttercream all over the sponge, then gently put the second sponge on top. Add another layer of buttercream peaks, then top with the final sponge. Pipe the remaining buttercream in a ring on top, then generously heap the candied pecans in the middle.

delicious. tips

  1. This is a rare example of a bake that improves, given a day or two to ‘mature’. Make the sponges a day or two ahead, then wrap and store in the fridge until you’re ready to assemble the cake.

  2. If the buttercream is too warm and looks like soup, all is not lost. Chill in the fridge for 10 minutes at a time and mix until smooth. On the other hand, if it is too cool and too stiff to pipe, soak a tea towel in warm water and hold it around the bowl while you whisk to loosen it up.

Recipe By

Kevin Flynn

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    1. Hi Laurie, thanks for your comment. Do you mean baking the cake as a traybake? Or do you mean baking it in one deep round cake that’s then sliced? Let us know and we’ll advise! Thanks.

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