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Monday 29 April 2013

Let Her Eat Cake: Banana Custard Upside Down Cake

Banana Custard Upside Down Cake
By gum do we love an upside down cake here at DSHQ. Whether it's Caleigh's glorious gluten-free mango version or this comforting toffee-apple confection, the upside down cake has to be the perfect bake when pantry resources are looking a little low.

After moving house this weekend, I was in need of a quick, easy cake fix, made from ingredients that had found their way (amongst pairs of tights and empty DVD cases) into the box marked 'KITCHEN: MISC'. Slightly squashed bananas? Yes. Packet of custard powder that I've been ignoring for weeks? You finally have a purpose.

In many ways, this is an incredibly nostalgic cake: remember going round to a friend's house after school to play, and being given bananas and custard for dessert? The custard in the mixture keeps the cake soft and moist and combined with caramel-soaked, gooey banana, is like a warm hug on a plate. If you've been craving some custardy goodness since our Top Ten Custard Recipes, then here's yet another way to indulge...

Banana Custard Upside Down Cake
You'll need:
For the cake:
  • 110g butter, softened
  • 110g caster sugar
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 110g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 70g instant custard powder
  • 2 ripe bananas
For the caramel:
  • 20g butter
  • 3 tbsp dark brown sugar (muscovado works well)
Make it!
The cake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Generously grease a 20cm round cake tin (a silicon one will make the cake a lot easier to turn out).
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. 
  3. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl, then add to the butter in three or four batches, mixing well in between and including a teaspoon of flour each time to stop the mixture from splitting. 
  4. Stir in the vanilla essence. 
  5. Gradually sift the baking powder and remaining flour into the cake mix, folding in gently with a metal spoon. 
  6. In a separate jug, pour around 350-400ml boiling water over the custard powder and whisk with a fork for one minute until you have a very thick custard. (You may need to vary the water, depending on the type of custard powder). 
  7. Once the custard has cooled slightly, spoon 3 tablespoons into the cake mix and stir gently until just combined. 
  8. Sprinkle the bottom of the cake tin with a layer of dark brown sugar. 
  9. Slice the bananas into 1cm slices and arrange around the bottom of the tin. 
The caramel:
  1. Place the butter and dark brown sugar in a small pan. Cook over a low heat for a minute or two until they have melted together into a sticky, sugary caramel. 
  2. Pour evenly over the banana slices. 
  3. Dollop the cake mixture on top and spread evenly to the edges of the tin. 
  4. Bake for 30-35 minutes until risen and golden on top. 
  5. Leave for cool for 2-3 minutes, then invert the cake onto a plate and carefully remove the tin. 
  6. Serve warm. I added some fresh raspberries and smothered mine with the remaining custard for instant comfort.


  1. Custard and banana?! I think I love you, Laura.

  2. It's not as pretty as your mango one, but then, that is a thing of beauty.


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