I have been a little addicted to creating things lately. Whether it's homemade bread, playing around with Photoshop or making dessert. I feel a little bit more like who I am created to be when I am creating. I have actually come to realize it is a big way I connect with God, which is why I decided to make this cake last Friday. I needed some quality connecting time.
I was inspired by a package of kumquats at Trader Joe's, some overly ripe bananas in my cupboard and the way Miette frosts their Tomboy Cake. What I ended up with was a moist, delicious and interesting Banana Kumquat Cake w/ Cardamom Buttercream. Oh yeah, I also threw in a little Marie Antoinette in there by stamping the edge of a cardboard cake round with her 'infamous' line "Let them eat cake". (She may have never actually said that, but it sure does look cute on the edge of my cake board.)
It's a multi-part recipe, so hang in there. But take heart! Each component is relatively easy to put together.
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
Drop kumquats in a large pot of boiling water. Boil for 3 minutes; drain. (To remove bitterness from the fruit.)
In a small pot combine water and sugar. Heat until sugar has dissolved and add previously boiled kumquats. Bring to a simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes. Until liquid is almost all gone.
*You can do this in advance and store in the fridge if you want
*You will only need 1 1/2 cups for the cake. You can use the other 1/2 cup on top of some crusty bread and goat cheese for a tasty snack or appetizer
Banana Kumquat Cake
1 cup + 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 super ripe bananas, peeled and mushed
1 1/2 cups candied kumquats
Butter and flour a 6-inch cake pan and preheat the oven to 350.
Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt together. Set aside.
Using the whisk attachment of a stand mixer or a handheld mixer beat the eggs and sugar together until light in color, 3-5 min. Reduce the speed and add the oil and mix until combined. Add the mushed bananas and mix until combined. Add the dry ingredients in two additions, mixing just until combined. Do not overmix. Fold in the kumquats by hand.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 45-50 min or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool before inverting on a cooling rack.
1 stick butter, room temp
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp ground cardamom
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted for any lumps
2 Tbsp milk
Cream butter until fluffy and very pale in color.
Add vanilla and cardamom and mix thoroughly.
Continue beating while adding in sugar one cup at a time alternating with milk, beating until smooth in between each addition.
Composing the Cake
Level off the top of the cake using a serrated knife. Cut the cooled cake in half using a serrated knife or thread.
Pipe a thick single layer of buttercream using a wide star tip in a swirl starting from the outside edge of the cake working in to the center. Smooth the inner rings of frosting but leave the outermost ring untouched.
Top with the other half of the cake.
Make the same swirl design with the frosting on top of the cake. Using an offset spatula and a little bit of pressure, turn the cake to smooth out the ridges of the swirl.
Top with the two dried off candied kumquats coated in sugar.