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February 18, 2016
At Home with Friends

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Chocolate Chip, Banana, Cherry Cake

I’ve been making variations on this recipe for more years than I can remember. It’s always slightly different depending on what I add in and depending on the ripeness of the bananas. The basic recipe stays the same and there are never any leftovers.

The original was loaded with golden raisins, chocolate chips and walnuts. On New Year’s Day, I wanted a slightly different profile. I used dried cherries instead of raisins and omitted the nuts entirely. (One of my guests has severe nut allergies and another cake I was serving was loaded with nuts.)

You can tweak this recipe to your own taste. Try golden raisins instead of cherries, add 3/4 of a cup of toasted walnuts or pecans or even add some orange zest. Use your imagination. Be sure your bananas are really ripe and be sure to use chocolate chips that are at least 51% cacao. I buy mine at Costco, which is also where I buy the Tart Montmorency Cherries.

This cake is baked in a bundt pan, so it looks impressive when you serve it. It freezes beautifully and if you slice while still a bit frozen, you can make extra thin slices. That way you can have more than one.

CHOCOLATE CHIP, BANANA, CHERRY CAKE

EVENT: New Year’s Day Brunch

SERVES: 12-16 People

Ingredients

3 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

2 cups granulated sugar

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 3/4 cup mashed ripe bananas (approximately 5 bananas)

3/4 cup sour cream

3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips, at least 51% cacao

3/4 cup dried cherries (Tart Montmorency Cherries are the best.)

3/4 cup toasted chopped nuts (optional)

Equipment

10-cup bundt pan

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Grease or spray bundt pan with no-stick spray.

3. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.

4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add in vanilla, mashed bananas and sour cream. Mix until thoroughly combined, scraping down sides of bowl.

5. Slowly add flour mixture. When thoroughly combined, remove bowl from mixer and hand fold in chocolate chips, cherries and nuts (if including).

6. Turn batter into prepared bundt pan and bake in oven 50-60 minutes until tester comes out clean.

7. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

8. When cool, wrap in saran then foil and place in airtight container and freeze.