Ever act before you think? Well, on occasion I do. Take, for instance, last week when I asked the kids if they wanted me to make a cake to take Grandma's house. "Yes" was the answer and that wasn't the no thinking act. It was my next question... "what kind of cake should i make?". I figured chocolate would be the answer - as usual. But it wasn't. The answer from my son was banana...not bad until my daugther added "with peanut butter and jam!" Oh man. Of the many desserts I have made in my life, I can honestly say I have never made a peanut butter and jam banana cake. But I am not one to shy away from a challenge.
First, the banana cake. In my Cake Bible by Goddess Rose, there is a banana cake I have wanted to try for years but as you know from previous posts I am rarely able to live up to my self imposed Rose standards. But I was on high from my first huge success with a Rose cake and thought I could pull off another.
That led to the peanut butter and jam aspect of the cake. Luckily, I had just seen a post at My Baking Addiction with a beautiful peanut butter/cream cheese ring so I thought I would try it in this. To make life easy, I thought I would "sandwich" the peanut butter between 2 layers of seedless raspberry jam.
When it came out of the oven, the scent of sweet bananas filled the kitchen.... a good start! I promised the kids that they could help me frost it the next day. I wasn't sure what flavour would work best and in the end I decided on a white chocolate ganache and a drizzle of raspberry jam. Again, I thought I would use Rose's recipe for ganache. The problem... I hate to wait. So even though she clearly stated to completely cool down the heated chocolate and cream before adding it to the whipped cream, I convinced myself that my mix was cool enough. It wasn't. It separated and tuned into a messy puddle... it still tasted good but it was not pretty and did not glide nor would it cover the cake with the beautiful white sheath I had envisoned. Oh well, I slopped it on anyways and then drizzled the jam. Hmmm, it did not look like the cake I had baked in my mind.
I have to admit that it didn't taste like it did in my mind either. The flavours weren't quite strong enough - especially the peanut butter but it is very moist. The kids loved it, of course, and they are so proud of it that they tell everyone that they "invented" their cake. Their smiles when they do this fill their small, angelic faces.
I guess the moral of the Peanut Butter and Jam Banana Cake is that sometimes things don't work out as we imagine they will, and that's ok...sometimes what comes of it is even better.