Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Childhood memories

Almost everyone that I know that grew up in PDX during the 80's, knows exactly I'm talking about when I mention Banana cake. Banana cake is made up of layers of banana chiffon cake, fresh whipped cream, a middle layer consisting of fresh bananas, all frosted with fresh whipped cream, and simply garnished with maraschino cherries and cake crumbs.

Growing up, the Banana Bavarian Cake from Kienow's Bohemian Bakery was THE banana cake and a real treat. I remember having it only during special occasions, such as birthdays. In the 90's, when Kienow's starting going out of business and closing up it's stores, my poor dad would go to the ends of the earth just to bring home a cake.


My first birthday and yup, that's a Kienow's Banana Cake. As you  can see, my mom had to restrain me from digging into the cake.

The cake is such a favorite amongst Portlanders, that a food engineer was able to replicate the cake and published a recipe for all to enjoy. I found this recipe back in 2005-ish, but for some reason I never got around to trying it out. I recently dug up the recipe to pass along to a friend, and decided that it was time.

Instead of a 4-layer 9-inch cake, I turned out 24 cupcakes. My norm is to make filled cupcakes, but the cake was too delicate for me to use my standard filling method. The filled cupcake path was abandoned and a new plan for incorporating banana puree into the frosting was hatched. I must say it came out really tasty. One of my friends described it as a cross between banana bread and banana cream pie.

Banana chiffon cupcake with fresh banana whipped cream:

The only thing that it's missing is the maraschino cherry for garnish. For some odd reason, my grocery store didn't have any in stock. How weird is that?

On a side note, what do you think of my logo?


  1. It looks yummy!

    I like you logo!!!

  2. Celia, I have to say I totally remember the Bohemian Bakeries inside Kienows. We always said, "You know you're loved if you get a Banana Cake". The Bavarian cream and fresh banana sliced inside that fresh cake, topped with whipped cream frosting and toasted almonds. My Niece just graduated from high school and is representing her school as a princess in the rose festival, and in June we are celebrating with her, and I plan on recreating that cake. I'm not sure who's more excited to enjoy this decadent dessert!

    By the way, I work for Fred Meyer, now a division of Kroger. We have an incredible banana cake, and if you order it correctly (Bavarian cream, fresh banana sliced, whipped topping and almonds)it is a very close second to the original. Every time I order it for a birthday, everyone comments, Where did you get this? Not believing that a grocery store cake could take anywhere close to that great! With Kroger stores throughout the US, you might be able to find it where you live....Thanks for the wonderful posts!

  3. I NEED this cake. What would Delightful Cakery charge for one... (ahem, asking for a friend, jk). My baby shower is at the end of January and I'm thinking this would be amazing! Let me know please!