For The Vanilla Cake:
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon scant kosher salt
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3 large eggs
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt (sour cream or buttermilk* may be substituted)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For The Banana Pudding Filling:
- 3 egg yolks
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cups milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 fresh bananas, sliced
For The Whipped Cream Frosting:
- 6 ounces cream cheese (the kind in a brick)
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream, cold
- homemade vanilla wafers for garnish
- 1 fresh banana, sliced (for garnish)
Make The Vanilla Cake:
1Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F, and mist three 6-inch diameter cake pans** with non-stick spray. Cut three circles from parchment paper, and place them in the bottoms of each pan.
2Place the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
3Add the butter, and mix on medium-low speed until the mixture resembles damp sand.
4Stir in the eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula after each addition.
5Add the milk, yogurt, and vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed for about 1 minute, to aerate the batter and strengthen the cake’s structure.
6Transfer the batter to the prepared pans, and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cakes spring back when gently pressed and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs.
7Cool for twenty minutes, then unmold and place on wire racks to cool completely.
Make The Banana Pudding Filling:
1Heat the milk in a small pot until small bubbles form around the edge, and wisps of steam are rising from the surface.
2Place the yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
3Add the hot milk to the egg mixture, a little at a time, whisking to combine.
4When all the milk has been added, transfer the mixture back to the pot and place over medium-low heat.
5Cook the pastry cream, whisking constantly, until thickened (the mixture should be the consistency of pudding).
6Stir in the vanilla.
7Pour the pastry cream through a fine mesh strainer, into a heat-safe bowl. Use the back of a ladle to press the mixture through the sieve.
8Press a layer of plastic wrap directly onto the surface, and refrigerate.
Make The Whipped Cream Frosting And Assemble The Cake:
1Place the cream cheese and powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Fit the mixer with a whisk attachment, and whip on medium speed until the mixture is smooth.
2Turn the mixer down to medium-low speed and pour the heavy cream down the side of the bowl in a very slow and steady stream.
3When all the cream has been added, turn the mixer up to medium-high and whip until the frosting holds stiff peaks.
4Place one layer of vanilla cake on a serving platter. Spread half the pastry cream on the cake, and top with sliced bananas. Spread a small amount of whipped cream frosting over the bananas, and top with the second cake layer.
5Repeat, topping with the third layer.
6Frost the cake with the whipped cream frosting, and garnish with homemade vanilla wafers and additional sliced bananas.