Saturday, June 7, 2008

Banana Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Hold on a second, just stuck a big gooey bite of a Banana Bar in my mouth. Sorry, you will have to make your own.
So I have wanted to make these Banana bars for a long time. We always have bananas in the house but BabyGirl eats them so quickly that they never have time to really ripen. So I deprived my child of a banana yesterday so I could make the bars today. I know, what a bad Mom. I wanted to make them last week but we received a plague of fruit flies on our house. Apparently, newly constructed houses tend to have a problem with fruit flies. Who knew? They love new drains. They also love homemade traps of vinegar and sugar which I made and left around the house. Just a tip in case they come to visit you in the future.
The bars are wonderful. Very mild banana taste. If you have ever had an Italian Cream Cake these bars will have a familiar flavor. Let me tell you, I have had my share and your share of that kind of cake. It was my Mimi’s favorite to make.
I got the recipe off of Cookie Madness a few months ago but I changed a few things for convenience. I baked mine in an 8 inch Pyrex pan and it took about 30 minutes. The cake came right out of the pan with no problem. She used Mascarpone cheese instead of cream cheese and walnuts instead of pecans. Mascarpone can be pricey so I would just rather use good old Philadelphia cream cheese. Oh and by the way, 2 ounces of butter equals 4 tablespoons, and one large banana equaled a ½ cup mashed.

Banana Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from cookie madness
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 ounces butter, softened
3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas
1/3 cup toasted nuts
3 ounces cream cheese at room temp
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9 inch square metal pan with foil and spray foil with cooking spray.
Stir together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Using medium speed, beat in the egg, then stir in the sour cream and vanilla. Add the bananas and stir until well mixed.
Fold in the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Fold in the nuts. Pour batter in the pan, spread to the edges and bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. The bars might not appear very brown, so make sure to use a toothpick test. Cool on a rack. When cool, prepare frosting.

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