Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Banana Cake with Oat & Spelt Flour

How do you like to eat bananas - some people will only eat them when they are yellow but still very firm, whereas others like them when they are very ripe with black skin. The black skin might look as if the banana has gone bad, but it is fine as long as the fruit was not bruised to start with. Peel off the black skin, and the flesh will still be firm, creamy and ripe and also amazingly fragrant.

One of my favorite things to bake with really ripe fruit is banana bread-style cake, such as Nigel Slater`s Black Banana Cake (here) - this recipe calls for really ripe fruits, hence the name of the cake. It seems that there are basically two kinds – either the dark, dense, sticky variety (usually a so-called banana bread) or the lighter cake-type loaf. The recipe in my post today is more of the latter sort, and makes a great teatime treat or accompaniment to an afternoon cup of coffee. It can be made in a loaf pan or a retangular cake pan, like your good old brownie cake pan, and although you could add all kinds of extras to a banana cake (like chocolate chips, chopped pecans, walnuts, or raisins), I only like to add some pure vanilla and a hint of cinnamon.

Once thing that is noteworthy about this recipe is the fact that ripeness doesn’t really matter for this particular cake. The common belief that bananas for baking should always be soft and freckled with brown spot does not apply to all baking recipes calling for bananas. This cake differs from the usual in that it is light, and most definitely banana cake, not banana bread.

Banana Cake with Oat  & Spelt Flour

  • 375g bananas (peeled weight) - about 4 medium sized bananas
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 100g white spelt flour
  • 100g oat flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (I like to use Ceylon cinnamon)
  • 2 tps baking powder
  • a pinch fine salt
  • 180g superfine (baking) sugar
  • 8g vanilla sugar
  • 2 eggs (M), free range or oragnic
  • 4 tbsps sunflower or vegetable oil

  • 2 bananas
  • 2 tbsps natural raw cane sugar
  • some powdered sugar (aka confectioners' sugar or icing sugar) for the finished cake (optional but pretty)

  1. Set the oven at 170C°.
  2. Line a square 20cm baking pan with baking parchment.
  3. Break the bananas into chunks, then put them into a bowl and mash roughly with a fork and stir in the lemon juice. NOTE: avoid the temptation to turn them into a purée, chunky is what you are looking for.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, cinnamon, baking powder and salt.
  5. Put the sugar and vanilla sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer. Break the eggs into the sugar, then beat, using the whisk attachment, for three to four minutes, until light and creamy. 
  6. Pour in the oil, slowly, with the mixer on a moderate speed.
  7. Fold the flour and baking powder into the mixture.
  8. Fold in the crushed bananas, briefly, taking care to distribute them evenly but without crushing them any further.
  9. Transfer the mixture to the prepared cake pan and even out the mixture.
  10. Peel the two bananas, slice horizontally and place the four banana halves on top of the cake.
  11. Sprinkle the surface with the sugar.
  12. Bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until lightly firm on top. 
  13. Remove the cake from the oven and leave to settle, in the cake pan, on a wire rack, for about 30 minutes.
  14. Lift the cake from the pan, then place back onto the rack and leave to cool completely. 
  15. Dust with powdered sugar just before serving. NOTE: Although this cake is best eatenthe day it is made, it will keep for up to two days, covered well and kept in a cool spot.

Apart form the fact that you do not have to wait for those bananas to turn from a lovely yellow color to an ash like black color, what I love most about this recipe is that it calls for oat flour and white spelt flour - whenever possible I try to bake with different types of flour. As I love the taste of oats, always have, always will, I often replace part of the regular flour with oat flour, especially when the cake batter has a high moisture content.

It is so nice to see that spring has finally arrived around here. So, enjoy your cake in the afternoon or morning sunshine, if at all possible.


  1. I love banana cake Andrea! This looks delicious!!!xo

    1. Thank you, Gloria! Me too. Banana Cake is a wonderful teatime treat! And this recipe is nice with no butter but only a bit of oil and oat as well spelt flour.
      Thank you for stopping by!

  2. Beautiful, Andrea, as always! Love the banana print tea towels and your German cutlery! xo

    1. Awww, thank you, my friend! The reason why I baked this Banana Cake in the first place was so that I could show off my vintage German fairytale cutlery and that new banana tea towel from Belgium! ;)

  3. So happy to see your Post in my email box yesterday Andrea! This cake looks and sounds scrumptious! A talented baker you are!

    1. Dear Peggy, you are the best! And ever so patient! I have been a rather moody blogger lately having focused or rather shifted my social media attention to IG instead of my blog. But I find myself trying out so many new recipes lately that I decided it is high time to go back to my blogging roots to present some of my favorite recipe ideas with proper recipes.
      Thank you very much for your patience and for your kind words!
      Missed you, my friend!
      "See" you soon - hope all is well with you and yours,

  4. Welcome back, Andrea! Wie schoen, dass meine Vermutung nicht eingetroffen ist und du wieder koestliche Rezepte einstellst, so wie diesen sicherlich leichteren Banana Cake. Banana Bread ist mir manchmal etwas zu 'schwer'. Besteck und Geschirrtuch: perfect match!

    1. Liebe Wally, ich war ein wenig, na ja, sagen wir mal, abgelenkt bzw. habe so viel auf Instagram gepostet, da habe ich den Blog etwas aus den Augen verloren. Ich hoffe meine Zeit als ein etwas launiger Blogger sind vorüber. Zum Glück ist es ab Frühling auch wieder einfacher zu fotografieren - besseres Licht, Farben usw.
      Ganz liebe Grüße und ein fettes Dankeschön für deine lieben Worte!

  5. I really need to try spelt flour - you have been talking about it for years and I need to branch out! I just started using oat flour in my bread, which is lovely! I hope you are having a wonderful spring! Liebe Grüße, David

    1. Dear David, as you know, I love baking with spelt flour (white or whole grain spelt flour) whenever feasible - a bit nutty, a bit more healthy plus I keep telling myself, why limit myself to wheat flour?! Oat flour is fabulous in fruits cakes and it pairs particularly well with spelt flour here.
      Liebe Grüße und Danke für deinen herzlichen Kommentar!