Banana Layer Cake & Creamy Banana Icing from '38

Banana Layer Cake & Creamy Banana Icing from 1938

1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, unbeaten
2 cups sifted flour (cake flour preferred)
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup milk
1 large banana, sliced

Combine solid vegetable shortening, salt and lemon rind.
Add sugar gradually and cream until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition.

Sift flour and baking powder together 3 times. Add small amounts
of flour to creamed mixture, alternately with milk, beating
after each addition until smooth.

Pour batter into two 8-inch layer pans greased with solid
vegetable shortening.

Bake in a moderately hot oven (375 degrees F). 25 minutes.

Spread Creamy Banana Frosting (recipe below) on one layer and
arrange banana slices on top. Place second layer on top and
spread frosting on top and sides of cake.

Creamy Banana Frosting

2 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
3 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 large banana, mashed
3 tablespoons scalded cream (about)

Combine solid vegetable shortening, butter, salt and grated
lemon rind, and blend. Add 1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
gradually, creaming well. Add mashed banana and blend.
Add remaining confectioners’ sugar, alternately with cream,
beating until smooth and creamy and stiff enough to spread.

Makes enough frosting to cover tops and sides of two
8-inch layers.

Source: Mrs. Thurn, food expert and lecturer in the Rochester, PA
Daily Times newspaper, Wednesday, Jan 19, 1938.

My grandmother used to make a banana layer cake and I have never been able to duplicate it. I will try this one; it sounds really good.

Here’s a link to the original recipe in the newspaper:

The Daily Times - Google News Archive Search

The recipe calls for “Spry” which is a type of solid vegetable shortening (like Crisco) sold back then.

The original recipe calls for “1/2 tablespoon salt”. Most modern recipes use 1/2 teaspoon salt for 2 cups of
flour, so that must be a typo. The lemon rind, right below the salt, calls for “1/2 teaspoon” which sounds like
too little, so the amounts must have been accidently switched in the original article.

reading the original article was neat…thanks for posting

Thank You for posting this recipe Antilope,this sounds sooooo good,I haven’t tried it yet but will definitely try to make it,possibly for Thanksgiving! Curtis

The recipe sounds good. I will try it by myself.

Thank you antilope for the great recipe. My grandmother made one of these as well but i don’t know if it’s the same one. If it is it is very good.
Thanks mattie

Hi everyone, I am Mollydee and live in England UK! I find some of the recipes so interesting and want to try them but I have a problem, some of the ingredients, especially the seasoning and ready bought seasonings I have never heard of, an example being Old Bay Seasoning necessary for the Crab Shack Crab Patties, now if there is an alternative would it be possible to list it I am sure I am not the only ‘foreigner’ who looks at he recipes and is put off trying them due to this?