4 ounces (1/2 cup) cream cheese (half of a large 8-ounce block), at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Banana Cake Batter
1/2 cup butter (1 stick), at room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 medium ripe bananas, pureed with 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice (1 cup banana puree)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (8 ounces) banana yogurt*
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans, walnuts, cashews, or macadamia nuts
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon milk or cream (about)
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 9 x 13-inch baking pan with nonstick
Cream Cheese Topping: In a medium mixing bowl, blend together the cream
cheese and sugar with a hand mixer. Add the egg and beat until incorporated
and smooth. Mix in the vanilla extract. Set aside.
Banana Cake Batter: In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar with the butter until
well-mixed. It will look crumbly. Add the eggs, one at a time, blending completely
after each one. Add the vanilla extract and bananas. Mix until combined.
In a separate bowl, combine flour with baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Add the flour mixture and yogurt to the butter mixture, a third at a time,
alternating between the two until all is incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips
and nuts (pecans, walnuts, cashews or macadamia nuts).
Pour batter into prepared baking pan and smooth. Drop dollops of the cream
cheese topping on top of the banana batter, then smooth to cover.
Bake about 35 to 40 minutes, until lightly browned.
Remove to rack to cool completely to room temperature.
Icing: Mix milk or cream with confectioners' sugar until smooth, adding
enough liquid so it can be drizzled. Scrape into a zip-top bag, squeeze out
the air, and seal. Snip a small corner from the bottom of the bag and drizzle
the icing on top of the banana cake.
Let sit at least an hour to set.
* Sour cream or vanilla yogurt may be substituted for the banana yogurt.
To use as a Bundt cake: Pour banana batter into a greased and floured 12-cup
Bundt cake pan. Spread cream topping evenly over banana batter. Bake about 1 hour.