Banoffee Pie Cake

I have a love hate relationship with cake.  I know I sound like a monster when I say I don’t like cake, but I really don’t.  I think the love part comes in because saying you don’t like cake is seen as a sin to most people. Nevertheless, I make a new cake every three weeks at work.  That is a real struggle for me, especially because decorating is less than my strong suit.  To make it worse, my co-workers have been cake-ing much longer than me so I feel that my cakes pale in comparison.  The past two weeks, they set the bar super high and I was really nervous going into the cake this week and to make it even more complicated, the decorations had to include Teddy Grahams.  Yes you read that right.

I spent all last weekend thinking about what to make for the cake and hoped the decoration inspiration would come to me.  I knew I didn’t want to make anything with chocolate so I started thinking about what flavor combinations I liked and then it hit me, Banoffee Pie. For those who don’t know what it is, not only are you missing out, but the way I like to explain it is the British version of banana pudding.  As a Southerner, I have eaten quite a bit of banana pudding in my life, but I remember the very first time I was introduced to the concept of banoffee pie. To be specific, Mind of a Chef Season 2 episode 13.  April Bloomfield made one on that episode and it stayed in my mind until I finally made one of my own and totally understood how good it was. What is not to like about a sweet crust, sliced banana, globs of dulce de leche, and piled high with whipped cream? Seriously, I can’t think of anything that could make that better.  This is her recipe which is what I used: Banoffee Pie.

Sorry for the tangent, but I figured it was important to explain.  I took those flavors as inspiration for a layer cake.  I made a plain white cake, I believe it was a Martha Stewart recipe: Simple Layer Cake. I doubled the recipe and made three massive 9-inch cakes.  I also doubled my batch of frosting to make sure I would have plenty to decorate with and used this super fluffy dulce de leche buttercream. I layered sliced bananas and dulce de leche in addition to frosting between the layers and this cake was super tall, like it barely fit in the cake box.

So I had the cake idea but still had no clue how I was going to decorate it much less incorporate Teddy Grahams, then I started laughing to myself.  Bananas…monkeys…Teddy Grahams dressed as monkeys.  It may not have been a “refined” decorating plan but I decided to just go with it.  I was already super out of my comfort zone making a cake to begin with so why not do something I would never normally do.

First up was turning the Teddy Grahams into monkeys.  I cut up little pieces of tootsie rolls and rolled them in the thin ropes and stuck them on to the backs of the grahams and shaped them like tails.  Next, I took Pirouettes to decorate the outside of the cake to give a little more of a jungle feel.  Then I colored my leftover frosting and piped the entire top of the cake with a Wilton 233 tip to make grass.  Just as a fair warning, my hand was aching after I finished so here is your heads up if you want to decorate the entire top of a cake with grass.  Once my Teddy-monkeys were in place, I gave them all candy bananas (sorted out from Wonka Runts).

It may not have been the most technically perfect cake but I had lots of fun making it and learning more about cake and decorating it.  The journey continues!

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