A dream dessert for all chocolate lovers, this Manhattan chocolate banana butter cake with dark chocolate ganache is so rich, super moist, silky and creamy. An ideal dessert for each occasion, especially parties – because everybody loves chocolate! Here is the recipe:
For the cake:
- 1 1/ cups (12 oz.) unsalted butter
- 2 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- A pinch of salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 ¾ cups mashed very ripe banana
- 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, at room temperature
- 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 4 large eggs room temperature
- ¾ cup toasted pecans, chopped
For the ganache:
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 ¾ cups chopped the dark chocolate (70% cacao)
- 1 ½ tablespoon powdered sugar
- A pinch of salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
For garnish (optional):
- chocolate sprinkles
- chocolate chips
To make the cake:
- In a saucepan, apply the butter and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until melted and the bottom of the saucepan turn dark brown, around five minutes; scrape the browned butter into a small bowl. Place in the fridge for 1 hour to set softly.
- In the meantime, position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4. Then, grease three 9-in. round cake baking pans and line the bottoms with parchment, grease the parchment; set aside.
- In a medium bowl, beat together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In a separate bowl, mix together the buttermilk and mashed bananas.
- Remove the browned butter from the fridge and apply in a large bowl, then apply the brown sugar; using an electric mixer, beat them together on medium speed until fluffy and light, about 3-4 minutes. Apply the eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition.
- Next, decrease the speed to slow and alternately apply the banana mixtures and flour in 3 additions each. Add the chopped pecans and combine with a spatula.
- Then, divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Tap the pans to remove any air bubbles.
- Place in the oven and bake the cakes, switching and rotating positions halfway through baking, until a toothpick inserted in the middles comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes.
- Allow the cakes cool in the pans on racks for 15 minutes. Next, turn the cakes out onto the racks, take out the parchment, and let them cool completely.
- In the meantime, prepare the dark chocolate ganache.
To make the ganache:
- In a small saucepan, over medium heat, cook the butter until melted and browned, around five minutes. Remove the browned butter from the heat and transfer into a medium metal bowl. Apply the chocolate and salt.
- In the same saucepan, pour the heavy cream and bring to a boil over medium heat; remove and immediately pour over the butter and chocolate. Let stand two minutes, and after that whisk until smooth.
- Allow cooling at room temperature, until spreadable and thickened (stirring on every 15 minutes) for about 45 minutes.
To assemble the cake:
- Arrange 1 cake layer on a cake plate and top with 3/4 cup chocolate ganache, smoothing with an offset spatula.
- Next, apply the 2nd cake layer; spread with another 3/4 cup ganache. Arrange the 3rd cake layer and spread the remaining chocolate ganache over the top and side of the dessert.
- Decorate with chocolate sprinkles and/or chocolate chips (if desired). Slice and serve.