Tag Archives: Maida Heatter

Blackberry Banana Cake

YUM! If you love cakes like date-nut or pound cake, you will love this delicious banana cake.  It is very versatile and stands well for any occasion as well as packing for lunches or freezing.


Yield: 1 tube cake (25 slices)

3 cups walnuts (or pecans)
1 1/2 cups pitted dates (or dried cherries)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 cup unsifted whole-wheat flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon each nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice
1/2 teaspoon each ground cloves, ginger and salt
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup each granulated sugar and light brown sugar**
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups seedless blackberry jam
5 medium bananas (2 cups mashed)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 cup dark raisins

1. Adjust two racks, the first 1/3 up from bottom of oven and the second on the lowest rack. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Butter 10-by-4-inch (20-cup capacity) tube pan. Line with parchment paper and butter the paper. Chop 2/3 cup of the walnuts finely and turn into prepared pan to coat evenly. Distribute loose nuts evenly over bottom of pan.

2. Chop remaining nuts less fine. Cut dates into medium-size pieces. Toss with 1 tablespoon granulated sugar. Sift together flours, cocoa, spices and salt; set aside.

3. In large bowl of electric mixer, beat butter until soft. Beat in vanilla and both sugars. Beat in eggs one at a time, then beat in blackberry jam. Coarsely mash bananas and beat into batter.

4. Stir baking soda into buttermilk until baking soda dissolves. Add to batter. Scrape sides of bowl. On low speed, gradually add sifted dry ingredients, beating until incorporated. With wooden spoon, stir in nuts, dates and raisins. Turn mixture into prepared pan and smooth top.

5. Cover top with aluminum foil and place covered pan in oven. Place shallow pan of hot water on lowest rack (to keep steam in oven). Bake 1 hour, remove aluminum foil and bake for 1 1/2 more hours, or until cake tests clean.

6. Let cake stand 20 minutes before removing from pan. Chill and cut into thin slices.

7.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar, or cover slice with whipped cream, fresh fruit, ice cream, chocolate or fill two slices with your favorite mascarpone or cream cheese filling.

*Based on Maida Heatter’s Banana Black Cake

**  Sugar can be substituted with Splenda and it works well.


Chocolate Chip Coconut Macaroons

Love soft and chewy lip-smacking, best-I-ever-ate coconut macaroons that are super easy to make?  You will love this recipe and one of my favorites and the basis of which I create most of my coconut macaroons.  Try them for a truly “beyond the yum” recipe.

Chocolate Chip Coconut Macaroons


1/3 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs (graded large)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
10 1/2 ounces (4 loosely packed cups) shredded coconut
6 ounces (1 cup) dark or semi sweet chocolate chips

  • Adjust two racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Line two 12×15 cookie sheets with aluminum foil.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
  • Melt butter in microwave, set aside to cool but not harden (it must remain liquid)
  • In the small bowl of an electric mixer add the sugar to the eggs and beat at hight speed for 5 minutes until the mixture is almost white.
  • On lowest speed add the sifted dry ingredients, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula and beating only until incorporated.
  • Remove from the mixer, fold in the liquid butter and then the vanilla.  Then fold in the coconut and finally chocolate morsels.
  • Drop mixture by teaspoonful 1 -1/2 inches apart on aluminum foil covered cookie sheets.
  • Bake two sheets at time, reversing the sheets top to bottom and front to back during baking time for even browning.
  • Bake about 18 minutes until slightly golden brown; some parts will remain white.
  • With wide spatula transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.


  • Melt chocolate chips in microwave in 15 second intervals until melted, stir to blend.  Set aside to cool for room temp.
  • With spatula, glaze bottom of macaroons and place on clean cookie sheets lined with aluminum foil.
  • Place cookie sheets in refrigerator until chocolate is dry and set.
  • Store cookies in air-tight container and place in refrigerator.
  • Serve cold, room temperature or warm in microwave for 5 seconds.
  • Enjoy!!

Notes:  This recipe is based on Maida Heatter’s original recipe.  You can substitute chips with white chocolate, caramel or butterscotch chips.  I also use the base macaroon recipe with candy bar bits or chunks, dried fruits or glazed nuts.

Everyone Loves Cinnamon Buns

…and they love the enormous, delicious “can’t eat just one”

Cinnamon Bun Love
(a twice-revised version of Maida Heatter’s potato version)*

1 cup mashed potatoes, fresh or instant
1 cup milk (I use cream)
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar (I have used both sugar & Splenda)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 ounces (1/2 stick) sweet unsalted butter cubed
1/4 cup warm water
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of cinnamon & nutmeg
about 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Heat the mashed potatoes and milk in a small saucepan. Stir in the 1/2 cup sugar, the salt, and the butter. Heat and stir until the mixture is 105-115 degrees F. The butter does not need to melt completely.

In a 1-cup glass liquid measuring cup, stir the warm water with the remaining 1 T sugar, sprinkle on the yeast and stir briefly with a knife. Set aside for about 10 minutes or until the mixture rises to the 3/4 cup line.

In a small bowl, beat the egg and vanilla.

Transfer the potato mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the yeast mixture and the egg. On low speed, gradually add 3 cups of flour, cinnamon, nutmeg. Beat on low speed for a minute or two. Remove the paddle attachment and replace with the dough hook. Add and additional 1 1/4 cups flour. Continue to knead on low speed for about 5 minutes, adding up to 3/4 cup additional flour to make a dough that is not too dry and not too sticky. The dough should stick to the bottom of the bowl, but not to the sides of the bowl while kneading.

Place the dough in a bowl sprayed with Pam and then lightly spray the top of the dough as well. Cover with plastic wrap and place it in a warm place to rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the dough has doubled in volume.

Punch the dough down and transfer to a floured board. Cover it loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray.

Roll the dough to an 18-inch square with floured rolling pin. Spread the dough with butter and sprinkle on the cinnamon sugar and the raisins, if using. Roll the dough like a jelly roll and pinch the seam to close. Shape the log with your hands to obtain an evenly thick log. With a sharp knife (floured if sticking), cut the dough into 12 even pieces. Place the rounds into the 9×13 pan with 3 rows of 4 buns. Cover loosely and allow to rise for one hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake the buns for 20 minutes until the buns are nicely but lightly browned. Let stand for 5 minutes. Drizzle with glaze.


2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 ounce butter, melted
5 ounces dark raisins, steamed

Melt the butter in a bowl. In another bowl, combine the cinnamon, sugar, and nutmeg.


1 tablespoon unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup confectioners sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
a few drops almond extract
2 tablespoons cream

Beat or whisk all ingredients together until smooth. Add more cream or confectioners sugar to adjust the consistency.   Spread or pipe on buns.  The thicker the better!

*This recipe is based on Maida Heatter’s original and two other recipes combined.  The original is in  Book of Great American Desserts by Maida Heatter.  See my other recipes by Maida Heatter here on site.

The pictures are my version with Splenda which made a more “french pastry” texture to the final cinnamon bun which we really loved.

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