This one is the winner. There are 6 layers : chocolate sponge, caramel , chocolate mousse, banana, vanilla cake and chocolate mousse (does that count to six?). I soaked up sponge cake with espresso. Oh boyd, that was heavenly good , especially for chocolate / coffee lovers.
Close your eyes and take this bite from the fork!
March 2, 2009 - Here we go, the recipe as requested by visitors :-) . I adapted from David's recipe for the chocolate sponge and banana filling. For the mousse, I adapted from Alton Brown's recipe
For the banana filling:
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons water
3 ripe, medium-sized bananas
Juice of 1/2 lemon
For the cake:
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 cup banana puree (2 medium bananas)
1/2 cup low-fat sour cream (I used yoghurt)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1. To make the banana filling, mix the brown sugar and water together in an 8-inch square metal cake pan or cast iron skillet.
2. Heat the mixture until it begins to boil, reduce the heat and simmer 45 seconds, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
3. When cool, slice the bananas into 1/4-inch thick slices. Arrange them in rows over the melted sugar in the pan, overlapping them slightly. Sprinkle the slices with the lemon juice.
4. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
5. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon into a large bowl. Stir in the granulated sugar.
6. In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, egg, egg white, banana puree, sour cream and vanilla.
7. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and stir in the wet ingredients until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
8. Carefully spread the batter over the bananas and bake for 40 minutes.
9. Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes. Loosen the edges of the cake from the pan and invert on a serving platter.
For the chocolate mousse
1 3/4 cups whipping cream
12 ounces quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 ounces espresso or strong coffee
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon flavorless, granulated gelatin
Chill 1 1/2 cups whipping cream in refrigerator. Chill metal mixing bowl and mixer beaters in freezer.
In top of a double boiler, combine chocolate chips, coffee, rum and butter. Melt over barely simmering water, stir constantly. Remove from heat while a couple of chunks are still visible. Cool, stirring occasionally to just above body temperature.
Pour remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream into a metal measuring cup and sprinkle in the gelatin. Allow gelatin to bloom for 10 minutes. Then carefully heat by swirling the measuring cup over a low gas flame or candle. Do not boil or gelatin will be damaged. Stir mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside.
In the chilled mixing bowl, beat cream to medium peaks. Stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining whipped cream in two doses. There may be streaks of whipped cream in the chocolate and that is fine. Do not over work the mousse.