So as you can imagine, I had a heck of a task picking one recipe for the reveal. Along with the creamy mints, the shortlist also comprised of her Cheesy Potato Soup with Ham, Marshmallows, Gnocchi, Churros and Banana Bars, among many others that caught my eye. Well, you’ve probably guessed by now that I made the Banana bars with a Cream Cheese Frosting. The fact that I had 4 bananas slightly past their prime sitting on my counter, helped a lot in the decision making process. So I went with it and was very happy with the outcome. The recipe for the bars and the frosting is super easy to put together and is absolutely delicious. The banana bar base is moist and flavourful and honestly, I could eat it just like that without the frosting or anything. But for all you cream cheese frosting lovers out there, you’ll be happy to hear that the frosting takes it to a whole other level of deliciousness. These bars keep very well too. We had these as tea time treats and I might or might not have had a couple of these as dessert after lunch on my days off 😉 I simply covered them with cling film and refrigerated them and took them out of the fridge and placed them on the kitchen counter about an hour before eating them and it lasted about a week. It might have lasted longer, but we’d happily devoured it by then.
I stuck to the original recipe. Only difference is I used 4 bananas instead of 3, since I wanted to use all 4 bananas that I had. Also, you’ll see from Kate’s pictures (which are so much prettier that mine will ever be) that I used a different sized pan. She recommends a 9″x13″ pan. I used a 9″x9″ since that’s all I had. So I cut my bars into smaller sizes, since they would be a lot thicker than hers.
Yields 16 pieces
For the bars –
4 ripe bananas
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
A pinch of salt
Heat the oven to 180ºC and grease the baking pan.
Peel and mash the bananas in a large bowl.
Mix in the sugar, oil and eggs till well combined.
Stir in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.
Pour into a the prepared baking pan and bake for about 40-45 minutes or till done. (Note this was because I used a smaller pan resulting in thicker bars. If you are using a 9″x13″ pan, the bars will be thinner and you’ll need to start checking to see if its done around the 20 minute mark.)
Cool the bars completely before frosting.
While the bars are cooling, you can make the frosting.
For the Cream Cheese frosting –
3 oz Cream Cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
A splash of vanilla
3 cups icing sugar
Beat the cream cheese and butter till well combined.
Add the vanilla and the icing sugar half a cup at a time and beat between additions till you get the desired consistency. I ended up using the whole 3 cups.
To assemble –
When the banana bread has cooled through completely, spread the Cream Cheese frosting over the top.
Cut into bars / squares.