We’re gearing up for the World Cup with classic recipes from Brazilian Barbecue & Beyond, by the restaurateurs behind London’s Cabana restaurants.
In Brazil there are many types of banana cakes: cuca, a German cake with a rich, crumbly topping; banana bread; bolo cakes, which are sometimes made in a ring shape and often spread with cinnamon; and our favorite, the upside-down cake. Like the French tarte tatin, this indulgent cake is cooked with a layer of caramelized bananas at the bottom, then turned upside-down to show its sticky-sweet banana topping. Perfect as a teatime treat.
- 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
- 4 - 5 bananas, ripened
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2/3 cup unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
- 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 4 eggs, separated
- 3/4 cup unrefined superfine sugar
- 2 large ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
- Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Generously butter the bottom and sides of a heavy 9-inch diameter springform cake pan, then line it with baking parchment.
- To make the banana caramel, put the sugar and 2/3 cup water in a heavy pan and cook over high heat until the sugar has dissolved.
- Let it boil until thickened to a golden-brown caramel, taking care not to burn it.
- Remove and immediately pour it into the cake pan, tipping the pan slightly from side to side until evenly coated.
- Peel the bananas and halve them lengthwise.
- Arrange them over the caramel in a neat pattern, trimming as necessary, then dust with the ground cinnamon.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and cinnamon into a bowl.
- Put the egg whites in a separate clean bowl and whisk to stiff peaks.
- Put the butter and sugar in another large bowl and whisk until light and fluffy.
- Slowly whisk in the egg yolks one at a time.
- Fold in the mashed bananas, followed by the dry ingredients.
- Finally, fold in the egg whites.
- Pour the batter into the pan and spread evenly with a spatula.
- Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove and let cool for a few minutes before unmolding. (It is easier to unmold while it is still warm, before the caramel base hardens).
- Run a thin knife around the inside of the pan. Put a large flat plate over the top and, holding the pan and the plate, invert it, gently lift off the pan and peel off the baking parchment.
- Serve warm.
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