Chocolate Banana Nut Cake
Makes one 10″ cake, 10-12 servings
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup ground walnuts
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups lightly mashed (5-6 whole) very ripe bananas
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
Position a rack in the center ocf the oven and preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease a 10″ round cake pan and line the pan bottom with a parchment paper round.
In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the chocolate, stirring until completely melted and smooth. Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, ground walnuts, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to blend thoroughly. Stir in the buttermilk, vanilla, and banana just until combined. Set aside.
Add the eggs to the cooled chocolate mixture and stir until well combined. Stir the chocolate mixture into the banana mixture until well combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove the pan from the over and carefully sprinkle the chipped walnuts across the top of the cake. (The cake will still jiggle in the middle.) Return the cake to the oven and bake for 25 minutes longer, or until a wooden skewer inserted near the center comes out clean.
Cool the cake on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then remove the cake from the pan and allow it to cool completely on a wire rack.
Serving suggestion: serve the cake dusted with confectioners’ sugar or topped with whipped cream.
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