banana rum coconut layer cake

Lately, I have had a never ending supply of browning bananas on my counter. Yes, thanks to Costco and their unbelievably low price of $1.19/bunch of 12+. Compare that to 79¢/one measly banana on a Manhattan street corner... so The Husband always buys a huge bunch on his weekly Costco run.

I was baking for a reception at The Montclair Music Club's Annual Soirée and decided Nick Malgieri's recipe for a banana cake would do nicely.

The cake is moist and and has dense texture, which I enjoy.  The addition of the rum (in the batter and whipped cream) and coconut elevate it from its normal bread/muffin status to a more sophisticated sweet. This recipe is definitely a keeper, though next time, I might add some coconut into the batter, like in the Banana Crunch Muffin recipe.

Banana Rum Coconut Cake
from The Modern Baker by Nick Malgieri

2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened,
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 cup mashed banans (about 2 large)
2/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon dark rum

2 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon dark rum
2 2/3 cups sweetened shredded coconut (one 7-ounce package)

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Mix well.

Combine the butter, sugars, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer.  Beat with the paddle on medium speed until lightened in color and texture, 3-4 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In another bowl, stir the bananas, milk and rum together until blended.  Decrease the mixer to lowest speed and add 1/3 of the flour mixture.  Stop and scrape down the bowl and beater.  Beat in half of the banana mixture.  Repeat with another third of the flour, remaining banana, and then remaining flour.  Stop and scrape the bowl and beater.  Increase the speed to medium and beat the batter continuously for 3 minutes.

Divide the batter equally between two prepared pans and smooth the tops.  Bake until the layers are well risen and deep golden, and feel firm when pressed in the center with a fingertip, 25-35 minutes.

Cool the layers in the pans on racks for 5 minutes, then unmold, turn right side up and cool completely on racks.

For the whipped topping, whip the cream with the sugar and rum. Spread the bottom cake layer with a little less than half the whipped cream.  Invert the second layer onto the cream so that the smooth bottom of the layer is on top.  Spread the remaining cream all over the outside of the cake.  Press the coconut against the side of the cake to adhere.  Scatter more coconut over the top of the cake, and use a spatula to gently sweep across the coconut to make it even.

Keep covered and refrigerated.


  1. This really looks amazing. I shouldn't be surprised. You always feature delicious and good looking food. it's great to visit here. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

  2. mmmm bananas, rum, and coconut? pass me a slice :)

  3. This looks fabulous! I LUVVV coconut.

    If you are interested…
    Don't forget to stop by my blog.
    Baking is my Zen will be having a COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY
    from August 8 through August 14, 2010.

    The giveaway will be the ‘not yet released’ cookbook,
    Baked Explorations: Classic American Desserts Reinvented
    By Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito


  4. What a great cookbook, author and dessert! The combination of flavors sound wonderful; YUM!


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