Next to food and cooking, I think what drives most bloggers to devote time and energy to posting about their foodie obsessions is the opportunity to interact with other like-minded people. In the 3 plus years that I've been blogging, I've "met" some wonderful folks from all around the world who share my passion for the art of cooking. I follow their blogs each day, derive inspiration from them, and widen my sphere of bloggers through them. This is how I happened upon the Secret Recipe Club, the brainchild of Amanda, whose story of her leap into the blogging world is nothing short of inspiring. When Amanda was searching for ways to bring more exposure to her blog, she conceived of the Secret Recipe Club. Her idea was to make a recipe from a fellow blogger who, in turn, would make a recipe from Amanda's Cookin. But Amanda thought it would be even more fun if more bloggers were involved and so she opened up the clubhouse. From the 19 members that first month, the Secret Recipe Club has grown to several hundred members. And now The Food of Love is one of those members.
For my first month's participation, I was assigned Nicole's wonderful blog The Daily Dish. Nicole is a mother of 5 who somehow finds the time to blog about food and family. I enjoyed getting to know Nicole better by reading through her posts. Her interests are quite varied and I picked up some great information. Deciding which recipe to try took a bit of deliberating, but I finally decided on this pudding-like banana cake with orange icing.
With a large bag of very ripe bananas in the freezer, this cake was going to be economical as well as delicious. The original recipe is here. I cut the recipe in half, tweaked it a bit, and used a loaf pan to produce 12 servings. That recipe follows:
1/2 lb unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2-3 large overripe bananas, mashed
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups confectioners sugar
1 1/2 tsp unsalted butter, softened
2-3 tbs orange juice
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees Farenheit. Grease a large loaf pan and line with parchment paper. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Stir in half the flour, then half the mashed bananas. Incorporate completely, then mix in the other half. Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour or until a cake tester comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then cool on a rack.
To make the icing, melt the butter in the microwave. Add the confectioners sugar and orange juice to form a slightly runny paste. Pour over cool cakes, letting the icing run down the sides.
DSO really, really liked this version of banana cake as did I. It's so moist that you'd swear it has some kind of pudding in it. It keeps very well in the refrigerator and the orange icing was a perfect topping, just sweet enough without being cloying.
Please visit all the other wonderful Secret Recipe Club members whose recipes are available below by clicking on the thumbnail.