Banana Split Cake

I've been a bit absent from the internet since last week. I'm alive, don't worry!

Last weekend was the beginning of my much needed spring break. I know I've said it before, but this semester has been absolutely terrible for me. (Leave it to me to start off a blog post bitching!) But honestly, I have never been as stressed as I have been in the past few months. I keep telling myself that all of my hard work and crazy long days are going to pay off. That's how it goes, right? 

Anyways, I've been working like a machine since January and desperately needed time to just be. That's exactly what I've done — absolutely nothing. None of my friends have the same spring break at me, and my house is pretty empty most days, so I've been pretty much alone all break. With that said, I should probably be working on the two papers, homework assignments, and projects I have due next week, but what's the fun in that? 

I even tried baking a bunch of new recipes, but nothing really stood out enough to post. That should be a good indicator of the funk I'm in right now. That was until I made this.    

So I've recently become totally obsessed with ice cream. I've never been that head over heels for ice cream; I'm a much bigger froyo and gelato fan. But for some reason (that reason being my new tradition of monthly trips to Creole Creamery, New Orleans' best ice cream parlor), I've found myself totally infatuated with ice cream. 

Being the obsessive/addictive personality I am, I naturally decided to order my own ice cream maker and three special cookbooks at midnight a few days back. Yolo??? (If you have any amazing ice cream recipes, please send them my way!) 

Anyways, ice cream has been fresh on my mind for the past few weeks. I've been itching to bake something ice cream-inspired. Thus, the banana split cake was born! 

This cake is indulgent in every sense of the word.

The base is made up of one of my absolute favorite cakes ever. This banana cake is crazy moist and always delicious. The frosting though. That's some good shit. Vanilla bean paste + half and half are added to butter and powdered sugar to make the most amazing vanilla bean buttercream that tastes like melted ice cream. In between each layer is fruit (either strawberries or pineapple), hot fudge, crushed nuts, and waffle cone pieces. If that wasn't enough, I covered the whole cake with even more hot fudge, whipped cream, and maraschino cherries. Can you say sugar coma?!

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banana cake 

adapted from Food.com

  • 1 1/2 cups bananas, mashed, ripe
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • a pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 1/8 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 275°. Grease and flour three 9" round cake pans. 

In a bowl, mix together the mashed bananas and lemon juice. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside. 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla.

Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix in the banana mixture.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick placed into the cake comes out clean. (Note: the cake make take a little more or a little less time to bake depending on your oven. The best bet is to check it 5-10 minutes before just to make sure it's all good!) Cool. 

vanilla bean buttercream frosting

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature 
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 4 tsp. vanilla bean paste
  • 2 tablespoons. half and half 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and salt until creamy. Gradually mix in sugar. Once all sugar is incorporated, add the vanilla bean paste and half and half. Mix. 

sundae extras + assembly 

  • 1 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 cup pineapple, sliced
  • 1 banana, sliced 
  • hot fudge, storebought or homemade 
  • chopped nuts — I purchased a "Nut Topping" mix intended for ice cream sundaes. 
  • waffle cone pieces 
  • whipped cream
  • maraschino cherries

Place one cooled cake layer on serving plate or cake stand. Spread the layer with prepared frosting. Top layer with sliced strawberries, nuts, and hot fudge. 

Place the next layer on top. Frost. Top with pineapple, nuts, and hot fudge.

Place the final on top. Frost the entire outside of the cake. Once frosted, top with hot fudge sauce, whipped cream, cherries. Serve slices with extra nuts and waffle cone pieces. 

fat tuesdays: district donuts

Fat Tuesdays has risen from the dead! If you needed a refresher, Fat Tuesdays is a series I began during Mardi Gras to showcase some of the sweetest treats New Orleans has to offer. Or maybe I created it to excuse myself from eating too much sugar? Anyways...

This weekend, I FINALLY took an extra special trip to District Donuts, arguably New Orleans' latest sweet hotspot and one of the most exciting new additions to the city's sugar scene. I've been following District online for months and find myself salivating each morning when they Instagram their daily donut creations. I have even tasted two of their donuts outside of the store, but I refuse to count that as the official popping of my District cherry. 

I'm honestly embarrassed that it's taken this long to visit. Even Miley Cyrus went there before me! With that said, my first instinct was to order one of everything. I mean, hey, why not go all out? This was a momentous occasion! 

Five minutes later, I had two giant boxes of donuts in my hand. From there, it was off to the nearest booth to brace myself for what was about to come. I slowly peeled back the tape shielding me from my sweet nirvana. There they were, the circles of fried dough I had been lusting over for months. Time to dig in.

Clockwise from the top: Salted Caramel, Lucky Charms, Vietnamese Iced Coffee, Glazed, Brown Butter Pistachio, Coconut Cream.

Clockwise from the top: Salted Caramel, Lucky Charms, Vietnamese Iced Coffee, Glazed, Brown Butter Pistachio, Coconut Cream.

Glazed - So simple and delicious. One of my favorites solely for the reason that I could taste how good the actual donut was itself. 

Lucky Charms - Super super sweet — rot your teeth sweet!

Maple Bacon - I'm well over the whole bacon thing, but the maple glaze on this one made it one of my favorites! 

Salted Caramel - Salty salted caramel over a circle of fried dough. No brainer. Delicious. 

Brown Butter Pistachio - Hands down the best. Damn. 

Coconut Cream - I don't like cream donuts at all, but this one changed my mind. Perfectly balanced flavor. Not too coconut(ty?) if you're one of those people that hates coconut. 

Vietnamese Iced Coffee - Coffee is not my thing at all. My friend Ashley disagrees. 

Wedding Cake - Save this one for last. All of the glaze put my in almond extract heaven. 

District's donut selection changes daily, giving me the perfect excuse to go back and absurd amount of times in the near future. In addition to donuts, District offers up signature sliders, lots of beer, super tempting waffle fries, and Dole Whip. DOLE. WHIP. If y'all didn't know, Dole Whip is one of my favorite desserts ever. Call me basic, but I just love me some pineapple soft serve. The realization that I can now readily satisfy my Dole Whip cravings without a trip to Disney World or the Dole Plantation in Hawaii was a truly momentous occasion.

Go here. Immediately

District Donuts is located in the Lower Garden District at 2209 Magazine St. 

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