Monkey Cake

You must make this cake. Now.
No, seriousely, you REALLY should go make this cake.  Did you make it?
Oh, good. Wasn’t it amazing?  Moist, I know!  And SO delicous!  I know, I KNOW!!  I’m so glad we’re in agreement. I mean, it might have been a couple of extra steps, but I’m so glad you understand how it was worth it!  No, don’t thank me, I’m just so glad you made it and were able to enjoy it too! : )
MONKEY CAKE
2 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups canola oil
3 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups ripe Bananas, mashed with chunks remaining
1 cup crushed pineapple with juice
1 cup toasted pecans, toasted and chopped (I left out)
Mix the flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl.
In seperate bowl, whisk together the sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla until well combined.
Add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture and mix on medium-low speed just until the flour is moistened.  This takes less than 20 seconds.
Add the bananas and pineapple and stir briefly, 20 seconds, on low speed to distribute them evenly.
Add pecans and mix again briefly, scrape bowl as needed. Don’t overmix or the cake will be tough!
Spray two 9 inch cake pans with nonstick spray and divide batter between them.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 38 minutes, or until cake is almost ready to pull away from the sides of the pan and toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs.
Cool the pans on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert them onto a wire rack that has been sprayed with cooking spray and lift off the pans.
To prevent cracking, right each layer so the top side is up. Frost with cream cheese frosting when cool.
CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
3/8 cup unsalted cold butter (1 stick plus 1 T)
3/4 cup poured fondant* at room temperature
3 1/2 (8 oz) pkgs cream cheese, cold
Cut the butter in chunks and mix in a mixer with a paddle attatchment.
Mix on medium speed until butter is malleable and spreads on sides of bowl, about 2 min.
Add fondant all at once, in 3 or 4 lumps, and mix on medium to med-high speed until completely smooth, 2 or 3 more minutes. Scrap sides of bowl as needed. There should be no lumps.
Cut cream cheese in chunks and gradually add in 3 additions, mixing at med speed, until icing is completely smooth, 5 to 6 minutes.  Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.  If it’s too stiff, let sit at room temp and stir again.
*POURED FONDANT
2 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup light corn syrup
In medium saucepan, boil everything together, stirring constantly. Stop stirring as soon as it boils.
Cook to 238 degrees (soft ball stage). Immediately pour the hot syrup into a food processor fitted with a steel blade.
Wash the thermometer well and put back in the syrup. Let the syrup cool undisturbed to 140 degrees, about 25 to 30 minutes.
Remove thermometer, turn food processor on until syrup converts completely from a glassy syrup to an opaque paste, 2 to 3 minutes.  Pour in a heatproof container and store at room temperature for 24 hours before using it.  In can be stored like this for up to 6 days, and in the fridge for up to 6 months.
SOURCE: “The Sweeter Side of Amy’s Bread” By Amy Scherber and Toy Kim Dupree
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