I had always wanted to bake a really special cake for Hazel's first birthday. A pretty one. And a healthy one. And I think I succeeded with this one. It's really a vegan version of my popular super moist banana bread recipe with dark chocolate added to it and it's covered in a coconut cream frosting. I topped it with some fresh berries.
Banana Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting
I tripled the cake recipe below and doubled the frosting recipe for the party and had enough to make one 8" double layer cake and about 18 cupcakes.
4 ripe mashed bananas (the riper, the better)
1/2 cup coconut sugar
2 tablespoons chia seeds + 6 tablespoons water
6 tbs melted coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups spelt flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
7 oz dark chocolate, finely chopped (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rub coconut oil in two 8" cake pans. Set aside. Combine the chia seeds and water in a small bowl and stir well. Set aside to gel about 5 minutes.
2. In a large bowl, combine the mashed bananas, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and vanilla. Add the gia gel and stir until incorporated.
3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir very well. Now is the time to add chopped chocolate and mix to incorporate. Pour the batter in the oiled cake pans. Bake for about 35-45 minutes, or until a butter knife inserted in the middle comes out mostly clean. Let cool completely (preferably overnight) before frosting.
Vanilla Bean Coconut Cream Frosting
2 cans of organic, full fat coconut milk (Thai Kitchen brand is the best for this)
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
1. Refrigerate the cans of coconut milk at least 4 hours (overnight is probably best) in order to separate the coconut milk from the water.
2. Once the coconut milk is chilled, gently open the cans and scoop off the coconut cream into a mixing bowl. Reserve the water for smoothies or other recipes, if desired. Add the maple syrup, vanilla extract, and vanilla bean seeds to the bowl with the coconut cream. With an electric hand mixer, mix until the frosting is fluffy and creamy. It won't get as fluffy as dairy whipped cream, but it should be smooth.