I sometimes worry that I've lived out west too long and that my sensibilities will never match the ones here. As I get more settled into a routine, I find myself confusing New Yorkers with the weird, crunchy West Coast habits I've mostly acquired while living in Portland. Like bringing my own tote bags for groceries. I literally bewilder almost every cashier I interact with when I decline the plastic bags they seem to hand out so freely (they were 10 cents a bag in San Francisco!) and give them my own.
There also seems to be some sort of dress code for very specific events and places that I seemed to have missed. Just last week, as I met an acquaintance of mine for a drink, I walked in and found myself to be the only lady wearing flats and a loose fitting denim dress. Even with the 90 degree+ weather and the fact that it was only 6:30PM, all the ladies and gents were decked out with makeup, bandage dresses, and suits. Maybe it's because we were at a rooftop bar overlooking Central Park? Is that #fancy? Oh well.
But now that we're on the subject of #fancy, can we talk about this triple chocolate banana cake for a hot second? Again, this is one of the recipes I hastily threw together while I was clearing out my San Francisco fridge of all its ingredients. The banana cake layers are incredibly dense and fudgy; so much that it could almost pass for banana bread. And since I love chocolate (and needed to get rid of a lot of it before I moved), there are three types in the cake: mini chocolate chips in all the layers, slathered with an instant chocolate fudge frosting (more of that in the baker's notes), all of which is topped with a shiny chocolate drippy glaze. Oh! And some white chocolate chips for garnish... I guess that's FOUR types of chocolate.
Some baker's notes:
- Plan ahead for this one and use the ripest bananas you can find for this recipe. Buy bananas that are ripe and let them get overly black and brown — the riper they are, the more sugar in the fruit, and the more flavorful and caramelized the cake's flavor will be. Epicurious even has a guide that tells you how far in advance you should buy bananas and where you should them to get them to their ideal state. And if you're just not a planner, you can always use this neat trick from the Kitchn to ripen them in the oven.
- Okay real talk; this cake is MAD dense. Like, banana bread level dense. It can be a little much, especially with all the rich frosting. I needed to get rid of the bananas in my freezer, okay? So if you're looking for a lighter and fluffier cake, I recommend scaling the recipe down from 3 medium bananas to just 2 (if using 2 bananas, scale the weight measurement from 9 ounces to 6 ounces). The recipe's pretty liberally adapted from the banana cake recipe from Momofuku Milk Bar, and it's SUPER forgiving and allows you to do so without needing to make any additional adjustments.You might need to adjust cooking time though — instead of checking for done-ness at 40 minutes, start checking at 30 minutes.
- The fudge frosting is hands down one of my favorite frosting recipes on my blog to date. Unlike with regular fudge, there's no need to fuss around with candy thermometers and heating all the ingredients to the right temperature. You pretty much just throw in all the ingredients in a food processor and process until you end up with a creamy and somewhat glossy fudge. The only thing is that you WILL need a food processor — you can't quite get the same texture with a freestanding electric mixer or a hand mixer. Sorry folks!