Sour Cream Coffee Cake

My favorite sour cream coffee cake recipe is perfectly soft and fluffy, layered with cinnamon sugar, and always so delicious. I realized the other day that it has been two decades since my college roommate, Natalie, first taught me how to make her family’s famous sour cream coffee cake. No idea how that’s even possible, […]

My favorite sour cream coffee cake recipe is perfectly soft and fluffy, layered with cinnamon sugar, and always so delicious.

Sour Cream Coffee Cake Recipe

I realized the other day that it has been two decades since my college roommate, Natalie, first taught me how to make her family’s famous sour cream coffee cake. No idea how that’s even possible, because it feels like just yesterday that we were baking up a storm together in our tiny college kitchen. But all of these years later — and countless batches of coffee cake later — I have to say that this nostalgic recipe remains one of our family’s all-time favorites. ♡

It features a simple batter made with basic pantry ingredients and reduced-fat sour cream, whose tangy flavor perfectly balances the sweetness here and helps the cake bake up to be incredibly moist. Then in between the layers of cake, we’ll add in a crunchy sprinkling of cinnamon sugar (plus some chopped nuts, if you’d like). And then for one final layer of indulgence, I always love drizzling a quick 2-ingredient glaze on top. This cake is guaranteed to make your home smell absolutely heavenly as it’s baking up in the oven. And once it’s sliced served up nice and warm with a hot cup of coffee on a lazy weekend morning, well, I don’t know if there’s a more delicious way to start the day.

Let’s bake up some coffee cake together, friends!

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Candy Corn Mini Cakes

Candy Corn Mini Cakes

Whether or not you’re a candy corn fan, you have to admit that the colorful candies are a symbol of the fall and Halloween seasons. I personally am a fan of the sweet, honey-flavored candies – although I can’t eat too many at once – so that’s an even bigger reason for …

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Candy Corn Mini Cakes

Whether or not you’re a candy corn fan, you have to admit that the colorful candies are a symbol of the fall and Halloween seasons. I personally am a fan of the sweet, honey-flavored candies – although I can’t eat too many at once – so that’s an even bigger reason for me to enjoy these Candy Corn Mini Cakes. Candy corn’s subtle flavors and vibrant color palate are great inspiration to bake some festive Candy Corn Mini Cakes that are sure to be a hit at any fall party, spooky or otherwise!

The cakes are tiny layer cakes that are about the size of your average cupcake. They’re not only frosted to look like candy corn, but they are flavored with honey and vanilla, capturing that hint of flavor from the candies without being nearly as sweet. There is also a touch of honey and vanilla in the frosting to tie everything together.

Speaking of frosting, that is the fun part with these mini cakes. I frosted these cakes in much the same way that I frost my ombre cakes, which actually makes the frosting process quick and easy. To get the look, I piped thick rows of yellow, orange and white frosting on the sides of the cake. This initial layer doesn’t need to look perfect! I also added white frosting to the very top of the cake. Once the rows were in place, I held my offset spatula vertically against the side of the cake and turned my decorating turntable (you can also use a plate or cake stand) so that the icing spread out and evened into a smooth, even frosting. I like having a bit of imperfection on the cakes because it makes them look homemade, so don’t worry if your colors aren’t perfectly even. After all – even the layers on real candy corn are not uniform!

This recipe will make eight mini layer cakes, each suitable for a single serving or large enough to share if you are serving more than one dessert. The cakes will keep for a couple of days in an airtight container once they have been frosted, so they can be prepared in advance if you intend to serve them at a party. I used a mini whoopie pie pan because it gives me the perfect size and shape for these layer cakes, however if you don’t have one, you can use a mini muffin tin (nonstick and well-greased) instead, scooping just a tablespoon of batter into each cavity.

Candy Corn Mini Cakes

Candy Corn Mini Cakes
14 tbsp all purpose flour (1 cup minus 2 tbsp)
2/3 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 large egg
2/3 cup sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp milk

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 24-cavity mini whoopie pie pan*
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In medium bowl, whisk together egg, sugar, vegetable oil, honey and vanilla extract. Whisk in half of the flour mixture, followed by the milk. Whisk in remaining flour mixture and stir just until no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
Divide batter evenly into prepared pan, filling one row of cavities with each color of batter.
Bake for 8-10 minutes, until cakes spring back when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few small crumbs attached.
Allow cakes to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 24 mini cake layers

*If you don’t have a mini whoopie pie pan, you can use a well-greased mini muffin tin and just add a scant tablespoon to each cup for similarly small cakes.

Candy Corn Frosting
1 1/2 cups butter, room temperature
1 1/2 tbsp milk
3 tbsp honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch salt
3-4 cups confectioner’s sugar
orange and yellow food coloring

In a large bowl, beat together butter, milk, honey, vanilla extract and salt until well-combined. Gradually blend in confectioners’ sugar until frosting is thick, smooth and has a spreadable consistency.
Divide batter into three small bowls. Leave one portion of the batter white. Color another portion with yellow food coloring until if is a vibrant yellow. Color the remaining frosting with orange food coloring.

Assembly:
Since yellow is the base of a candy corn, sandwich two mini layers together with a small smear of yellow frosting. Place a dollop of orange frosting on the top layer and place a third cake layer on top. Press cakes together gently but firmly. Place layered cakes on a cake stand or cake decorating table.
If desired, you can apply a thin crumb coat of white frosting and chill your cakes for 10 minutes. This will give you a smoother surface to work on. If you prefer to skip it, that is fine, too.
Pipe or spread a band of yellow icing around the base of the cake. Pipe or spread a band of orange icing around the center of the cake. Pipe or spread a band of white icing around the top of the cake, and finish the top of the cake with more white icing. Holding your offset spatula vertically, gently press it into the icing on the side of the cake and rotate your plate/spin your turntable to start to smooth out the icing until it has a smooth, even finish.

8 mini layer cakes

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James Beard’s Amazing Persimmon Bread Recipe

Like most Americans, even French people aren’t so familiar with persimmons. They may see them at the market, look at their curiously, but don’t stop to buy any. Or if they do, they take them home, bite into an unripe one, make a face, and toss them out. One of my friends living north of San Francisco in Sonoma County had an enormous persimmon tree….

Like most Americans, even French people aren’t so familiar with persimmons. They may see them at the market, look at their curiously, but don’t stop to buy any. Or if they do, they take them home, bite into an unripe one, make a face, and toss them out.

persimmon bread recipe

One of my friends living north of San Francisco in Sonoma County had an enormous persimmon tree. Each fall, the leaves would drift off the tree, leaving bright orange globes of fruit dangling off the sparse branches. The beautiful, gnarled wood was quite a contrast to the smooth, brilliantly-colored orbs of fruit. (The wood of the persimmon tree is not just beautiful but it’s prized by makers of many of the finest golf clubs in the world and is considered superior to most others woods or man-made materials.)

The most common persimmon you’re likely to find is the Hachiya, a slightly elongated fruit that tapers to a point. They’re incredibly tannic and astringent when not ripe and need to be squishy-soft and feel like a full water-balloon before using. Once ripe, the sweet jelly-like pulp can be spooned out and pureed through a blender, food processor, or food mill, although some folks like to eat it as is or frozen. The pulp freezes beautifully, and in fact, I’ll often freeze some for late-winter use. To ripen Hachiya persimmons, simply let them sit on your countertop until very soft. If they don’t riped at the same time, you can store the puree in the refrigerator until the others have ripened. You can hasten the process by putting persimmons in a well-sealed container; adding an apple, which gives off a lot of ethylene gas, which will speed things up.

The other common persimmon is the Fuyu, which is squatter than the Hachiya and matte-orange. Unlike the Hachiya, the Fuyu is meant to be eaten hard and is delightfully crunchy. I peel them, then mix pieces into an autumnal fruit salad along with dates, slices of Comice pears, pomegranate seeds and yes…even some bits of prunes. Finding recipes for using persimmons can be difficult. I invented a recipe for a quick Persimmon Cake for my book Room For Dessert, which I make often for Thanksgiving. And I also like James Beard’s Persimmon Bread, a nifty recipe from his classic book on breadmaking, Beard on Bread, published over 30 years ago.

I was fortunate to meet James Beard several times when he came to dinner at Chez Panisse. In the years after he passed away, we’d get all sorts of luminaries coming through our kitchen, people like James Beard, Jane Grigson, and Richard Olney, who were really wonderful cooks and writers.

The most charming thing about this simple Persimmon Bread recipe is that Beard gives bakers an inexact amount of an ingredient: sugar. So go ahead just this one time to improvise a little. Although I recommend using the higher amount of sugar, feel free to use whichever quantity you’d like…after all, you have permission from the granddaddy of all cooks, James Beard himself.

persimmon bread recipe-2

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Persimmon Bread

Adapted from Beard on Bread by James Beard. Using the higher amount of sugar will produce a moister and, of course, sweeter bread. I often use bourbon, as I like the flavor, but cognac and brandy work well, instead. I'm often asked about making this cake without the liquor and haven't tried it, as the liquor is an integral flavor in the cake. If you want to try it with something else, perhaps black tea or root beer could take its place. But I haven't tried either.

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups sifted flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups (400-500g) sugar
  • 1 cup (8oz, 225g) melted unsalted butter and cooled to room temperature
  • 4 large eggs at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 2/3 cup (160ml) Cognac or bourbon whiskey (see headnote)
  • 2 cups (500ml) persimmon puree (from about 4 squishy-soft Hachiya persimmons)
  • 2 cups (200g) walnuts or pecans toasted and chopped
  • 2 cups (270g) raisins or diced dried fruits (such as apricots, cranberries, or dates)

Instructions

  • Butter 2 loaf pans. Line the bottoms with a piece of parchment paper or dust with flour and tap out any excess.
  • Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC) degrees.
  • Sift the first 5 dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  • Make a well in the center then stir in the butter, eggs, liquor, persimmon puree then the nuts and raisins.
  • Bake 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Notes

Storage: Will keep for about a week, if well-wrapped, at room temperature. The Persimmon Breads take well to being frozen, too.

Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake

Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake
Pumpkin desserts tend to jump into the spotlight when fall rolls around, but apple desserts are fall favorites for me, too. Whether you’re talking about apple pies, breads or muffins, apple desserts are always crowd-pleasers. Like pumpkin in fall desserts, apples are often paired with spices like cinnamon and nutmeg – sometimes to …

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Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake
Pumpkin desserts tend to jump into the spotlight when fall rolls around, but apple desserts are fall favorites for me, too. Whether you’re talking about apple pies, breads or muffins, apple desserts are always crowd-pleasers. Like pumpkin in fall desserts, apples are often paired with spices like cinnamon and nutmeg – sometimes to the point where the natural sweetness of the apple is dominated by the flavor of the spice. This Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake keeps apple in the spotlight by pairing fresh apple with vanilla bean – and while it may not be the most traditional apple cake flavor combination, it is an amazing one.

As the name Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake suggests, I used real vanilla bean in this recipe. The bean should be split and the seeds should be scraped out and added to the apple cake batter. The vanilla seeds will leave small specks throughout the cake once they are stirred in. The vanilla not only highlights the flavor of the apple, but it adds a subtle floral flavor that reminds me of apple blossoms, not just of apples. You can substitute in a couple of teaspoons of vanilla extract for the vanilla bean if you don’t have one available, but the investment of the bean is well worth it because you’re not going to the get same floral vanilla quality without using a whole bean.

The batter itself is loaded with plenty of shredded apples which ensure that apple is distributed evenly in every bite. You do not need to peel the apples before shredding because any peel will be shredded into such small bits that they won’t be noticeable in the finished cake.

The cake has a tender, moist crumb and is very satisfying to eat. I finished mine off with a little bit of vanilla glaze to boost the flavor of the vanilla even more, but you could stick to a dusting of confectioners’ sugar if you want to keep things simple. If you like your cake with a little extra frosting, a thinned-down cream cheese frosting (just add a little extra milk until it is pourable) that is flavored with vanilla beans would also be a nice alternative. Regardless of what topping you choose, the cake will be delicious and it will keep very well for several days after baking.

Apple Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake
3 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 vanilla bean
1 1/2 cups shredded apple (3 medium apples)
1/4 cup plain apple sauce
1/2 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, beat together sugar and eggs until light. Stir in the vegetable oil. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and use the back of a knife to scrape out the seeds. Save the pot to make the vanilla glaze. Add the seeds to the batter and stir in shredded apples and apple sauce. Blend in half of the flour mixture, followed by the milk. Stir in all the remaining dry ingredients and mix until batter is uniform and no streaks of flour remain.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean and the cake springs back when lightly pressed.
Allow cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Serves 12.

It isn’t worth using a second vanilla bean just for the glaze. Re-scrape the vanilla bean that you used in your cake to get the last seeds and add them in to the glaze. If you can’t get any seeds at all, simply trim a 1/2-inch piece off of a fresh vanilla bean, scrape the seeds out and add that to your glaze. Store the leftover bean in a glass container until you’re ready to use it in another project.

Vanilla Bean Glaze
1/2-1-inch piece vanilla bean
2 tbsp butter, softened
2 tbsp milk
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Split the vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds using the back of a knife. In a medium bowl, beat together vanilla, butter, milk and 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar. Gradually blend in the remaining confectioners’ sugar until the frosting becomes thick, smooth and pourable.
Drizzle onto cooled cake.

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German Apple-Almond Cake

German baking, I don’t think, gets its due. It’s partially because the names of the pastries and baked goods don’t exactly roll right off most of our tongues. Kartoffel-Käse Dinnede, Zitronenbiskuitrolle, Aachener Poschweck, Schwäbischer Prasselkuchen, and, well…I’ll quit now, because it’s taking me too long to hunt down all those keys on my keyboard. And I’d rather be wrapping my tongue around German cakes and cookies, rather than trying to…

A delicious cake loaded with apples and almond paste, which makes this cake extra-moist. A recipe from Classic German Baking for the fall, and the holidays!

German Apple Almond Cake recipe

German baking, I don’t think, gets its due. It’s partially because the names of the pastries and baked goods don’t exactly roll right off most of our tongues. Kartoffel-Käse Dinnede, Zitronenbiskuitrolle, Aachener PoschweckSchwäbischer Prasselkuchen, and, well…I’ll quit now, because it’s taking me too long to hunt down all those keys on my keyboard. And I’d rather be wrapping my tongue around German cakes and cookies, rather than trying to wrap it around their names.

Fortunately Luisa Weiss, who writes one of my favorite blogs, Wednesday Chef, has published them in a very accessible collection of recipes, Classic German Baking. This beautifully written cookbook features traditional German favorites, adapted for kitchens everywhere. (And yes, there’s a guide at the end of the book for how to pronounce everything.) It’s one of those cookbooks that you’ll bookmark several recipes in on your first glance, like I did. Then during the next few weeks, you’ll spend your way baking through them.

Luisa was born in Berlin. Her mother is Italian, and she’s lived in Germany, France, and the United States. So you’ll be happy to hear that all the cakes, cookies, tortes and kuchens are completely do-able in any kitchen, using ingredients that are easy to get. And for the few that might pose a challenge, like spiced plum butter and quark, she gives recipes on how to make them yourself.

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Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake

Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake

Cake for breakfast is always a treat. Now there are plenty of times were I treat myself to a slice of leftover layer cake from the day before with you morning coffee, but usually cake for breakfast means coffee cake. This Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake is a moist cake packed with fresh …

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Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake

Cake for breakfast is always a treat. Now there are plenty of times were I treat myself to a slice of leftover layer cake from the day before with you morning coffee, but usually cake for breakfast means coffee cake. This Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake is a moist cake packed with fresh blueberries and bright lemon zest, both flavors that are welcome at my breakfast table. And who doesn’t love a bit of extra fruit with breakfast – especially when it helps to justify an extra piece of cake!

The cake starts with a buttermilk cake batter that is flavored with lots of lemon zest. The lemon zest gives the cake plenty of bright flavor, more than you would get from juice alone. I did use two whole lemons (medium sized lemons) for the zest, so be sure to pick up two and save the zested lemons for juicing later on by storing them in the fridge. The blueberries are folded into the batter just before baking. Some may sink to the bottom of the cake because this is a light textured cake that has quite a lot of berries in it, but as long as you’ve greased your pan or lined it with parchment paper, the cake slices will come out neatly with the berries perfectly intact.

The cake is very moist and tender, much more cake-like than your average blueberry muffin. I topped the cake with a very generous sprinkle of sugar before baking to give it a nice crisp top crust and to add a little additional sweetness to the cake. If you have a favorite streusel recipe, you can certainly sprinkle that on top instead of the sugar to turn this easy cake into a slightly more traditional coffee cake.

As usual, you can use frozen blueberries in this cake recipe instead of fresh if fresh berries aren’t in season. If you are using frozen berries, I recommend using them from frozen and not letting them thaw before folding them into the batter. This will prevent the berry juice from running into the rest of the cake and turning the whole thing blue. Your cake might also need an additional minute or so of baking time, especially if you opt to be generous when you measure out the berries (as I sometimes am!), since cold berries will slightly chill the batter. Fresh blueberries are best when they are in season, so keep this recipe in mind the next time you buy a basket from your local grocery store or farmers’ market.

Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake

Blueberry Lemon Brunch Cake
1 2/3 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp lemon zest (2 lemons)
6 tbsp butter, melted and cooled
1 1/4 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
2 tbsp coarse sugar, for topping

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9-inch cake pan or line with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and sugar.
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, vanilla and lemon zest. Add in dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Pour in melted butter and whisk until butter is completely incorporated. Fold in blueberries.
Pour batter into prepared pan and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle the top of the cake with coarse sugar.
Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the cake is golden brown and the top springs back when lightly pressed. Allow cake to cool in the pan until almost room temperature (or at room temperature) before slicing.

Serves 9.

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Easy Iced Lemon Cake Bars

Iced Lemon Bars
When you think of lemon bars, you probably picture the lemon curd-topped treats that make citrus-lovers’ mouths water. I love a good lemon bar – and I have a recipe for perfect ones – but that’s not the only lemon dessert out there when you’re in the mood for a little …

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Iced Lemon Bars
When you think of lemon bars, you probably picture the lemon curd-topped treats that make citrus-lovers’ mouths water. I love a good lemon bar – and I have a recipe for perfect ones – but that’s not the only lemon dessert out there when you’re in the mood for a little citrus. And in the case of this recipe, I do mean a little! These Easy Iced Lemon Cake Bars are dense, tender cakes that are topped with a lemon icing. They’re bursting with lemon flavor, though you’ll probably only need a single lemon to make a batch, and they’ll satisfy a citrus craving every time.

The cake bars start with a batter that is flavored generously with lemon zest. The zest of a lemon is the colorful outer peel of the citrus fruit and it contains lots of lemon oil, which has a very concentrated lemon flavor. The best way to get the zest from your lemon is by using a microplane, which will get the zest off of one lemon in just a few seconds. It is possible to zest a lemon without using a microplane, but it takes a bit more time. One large lemon should provide enough zest for this recipe. Though there is no lemon juice in the cake batter, the icing is flavored using lemon juice, so just set the zested lemon aside after you use it for the cake batter to use when you’re ready to make the icing.

This cake almost has a pound cake-like texture to it and, though it is quite a bit lighter in texture than most pound cakes, it still uses quite a bit of butter. The batter will not rise as high as some other styles of cake, yielding a denser bar that is still very tender. It’s firm enough that you can pick up a slice and eat it out of hand, even though it can also be served with a fork.

The cake is baked in a 9×13-inch pan and should be cut into about 20 squares, but you can make them larger or smaller depending on the number of people you need to serve. The icing should be poured over the cake once it has cooled and spread into an even layer on top of the cake, which should be relatively flat after baking. I added a little sprinkle of lemon zest to the top of my cake to hint at the flavor, but feel free to dress it up by adding sprinkles, colored icing or even some edible flowers!

Easy Iced Lemon Cake Bars
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
10 tbsp butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup yogurt (or sour cream)
1 tbsp lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)

Icing
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2-3 tbsp lemon juice
pinch salt

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, yogurt and lemon zest, then gradually stir in the flour mixture until the batter comes together and no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
Pour batter into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely before topping with the icing.

To make the icing: Whisk together confectioners’ sugar, 2 tbsp lemon juice and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Gradually add in additional lemon juice, if needed, to thin the icing to a pourable consistency. Pour over cooled cake and spread into an even layer. Allow icing to set for at least 30 minutes before serving.

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Vanilla Vanilla Snack Cake

  Sunday snack cakes are the best. Knowing there’s a 13 X 9-inch covered dish filled with cake sitting on the kitchen counter makes me happy. And this one in particular made me very happy today. It’s all vanilla. And no fuss… except maybe for the buttercream swirlies I decided to add at the last […]

 Vanilla Vanilla Snack Cake

Sunday snack cakes are the best. Knowing there’s a 13 X 9-inch covered dish filled with cake sitting on the kitchen counter makes me happy. And this one in particular made me very happy today.

It’s all vanilla. And no fuss… except maybe for the buttercream swirlies I decided to add at the last minute. 

Frosted Vanilla Snack Cake

But only because today’s a meaningful day to me. Today marks the 30th year since my first kidney transplant and even though that kidney did not last as long as I had tried and hoped it would, it’s still special and important to me to this day. It helped me live nearly 20 more years of life and when I started getting sick again, it allowed me the time to receive a second transplant from my mom which is still doing good thankfully after 11 years. So today, we’re going to enjoy the heck out of this cake. And I hope you get the chance to try it and enjoy it as well.

That being said, I’m going to keep this post short so I can get back to snacking.

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Banana Upside Down Cake

In the winter, we often turn to the tropics to get our fruit fixes. Bananas are the most popular fruit in America, and they’re quite popular elsewhere, too. I’m happy with oranges, grapefruits, and chocolate (yup, cocoa beans are fruit – great news for fruit-lovers!) but sometimes it’s nice to throw something else in the mix, and I’ll grab a pineapple, some kiwifruits, a few…

Banana upside down cake recipe

In the winter, we often turn to the tropics to get our fruit fixes. Bananas are the most popular fruit in America, and they’re quite popular elsewhere, too. I’m happy with oranges, grapefruits, and chocolate (yup, cocoa beans are fruit – great news for fruit-lovers!) but sometimes it’s nice to throw something else in the mix, and I’ll grab a pineapple, some kiwifruits, a few avocados, or a bunch of bananas, when doing my food shopping.

Banana upside down cake recipe

While I was waiting for my yellow bananas to ripen, a few days later I came across these red bananas at the market. I love red bananas, which have a more pronounced flavor than yellow bananas, but are hard to come by in France, and elsewhere. (They should be dead-ripe when you use them. The skin will turn quite dark when they’re ready.) So jumped at the bunch when I saw it, and put those in my fruit bowl to see who would ripen first.

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