To make the Vanilla Wafers –
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (1 stick or 112g)
- 1/4teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar (210g)
- 1 vanilla bean, seeds only or 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste
- 1 large egg white (~33g)
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 1/3 cups AP flour (160g)
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder (~3g)
- With an electric mixer, cream butter, salt, sugar and vanilla seeds until light.
- Beat in egg white until well incorporated, scraping sides and bottom of mixing bowl to insure that all white has been incorporated.
- Beat in extract and milk until well incorporated.
- Whisk together flour and baking powder and add to butter mixture. Mix just to incorporate, scraping down sides and bottom of mixing bowl to insure that all flour has been incorporated.
- Fit a piping bag with a large, plain pastry tip. Fill bag with about 1/3 of the batter. Holding the filled bag perpendicular to a parchment-lined baking sheet, pipe batter into nickel-sized mounds, about 1 inch apart. To make neat, well-shaped cookies, as you finish piping each round, sweep the pastry tip horizontally off to the side with a slight curving motion. (The cookies should cover 2 to 3 standard baking sheets. Batter will hold for a while after it is piped, so trays can be baked one or two at a time, as your oven allows.
- Bake at 350°F for about 15-20 minutes, until cookies are lightly browned, rotating trays every 5 minutes or so for even coloring. Cool completely before storing. Cookies will keep in an airtight container for at least a week.
To make the cake –
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1¾ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups mashed ripe banana
- 1 (3.4-ounce) box instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1½ cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 box equivilent of Vanilla Wafers
- 4 medium bananas, thinly sliced
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with baking spray with flour or coat with butter.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.
- Add oil, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla extract and beat on medium-low speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Beat in mashed banana.
- Pour batter into prepared pans doing your best to fill them with equal amounts.
- Place in oven and bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Let cakes cool in pans for 10 minutes and then remove to wire racks to cool completely.
- Place pudding mix and cream cheese in a medium bowl and beat with a mixer set to low speed until smooth. Gradually add in cream and beat until mixture is very thick.
- Arrange about 15-18 vanilla wafers on top of one of the cake layers. Use a spatula to spread half of the pudding mixture on top of the wafers. Top with ½ of the banana slices placed in a single layer.
- Place a second layer of cake on top of bananas, and repeat layers: vanilla wafers, pudding mixture, and bananas.
- Top with final layer of cake.
To make the frosting –
- 3 cups (711 ml) whipping cream or heavy cream, cold
- 6 tablespoons regular sugar
- 1 1/2teaspoon (5 ml) Pure Vanilla Extract.
- Chill a stainless mixer bowl and whisk in the freezer for at least 5 minutes (or refrigerator for 20 minutes).
- Pour the cream into the bowl and whisk on medium-high (I used #8 on my KitchenAid mixer) until the cream begins to thicken. Gradually add the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, and continue whisking until soft peaks form. Add the vanilla extract and whisk until the frosting becomes stiff, but be careful to not over-beat, or the frosting will become grainy.
- Best used right away.