This is another go to of mine. I think it originally came from Bon Appetit years ago. It is a staple in our house for weekend brunches and one of the things the kids request when they come home. What makes it special and distinctive is that it takes the yumminess of banana bread and elevates it by adding the nuttiness of browned butter. And, of course, adding mini chocolate chips makes almost anything better. Cooking this cake in a bundt pan ensures that there is a lot of buttery, crusty exterior but the cake stays moist inside.
It also freezes really well, so I almost always double the recipe and freeze the second one or give it away.
Brown Butter Banana Cake with Chocolate Chips
½ lb. (1 cup, 2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2 medium bananas)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 ¼ teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-cup bundt pan. Tap out any excess flour.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Once the butter is melted, cook it slowly, letting it bubble, until it smells nutty or like butterscotch and turns a deep golden hue, 5 to 10 minutes. Let the butter cool until it’s very warm rather than boiling hot, 5 to 10 minutes.
Using a whisk, stir the sugar and eggs into the butter. (Since the butter is quite warm, you can use cold eggs for this.) Whisk until the mixture is smooth (the sugar may still be somewhat grainy), 30 to 60 seconds. Whisk in the mashed bananas, vanilla, and salt. Sift the flour and baking soda directly onto the batter. Pour the chocolate chips over the flour. Using a rubber spatula, stir just until the batter is uniformly combined. Don’t overmix.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, spreading it evenly with the rubber spatula. Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out with only moist crumbs clinging to it, 42 to 45 minutes. Set the pan on a rack to cool for 15 minutes. Invert the cake onto the rack and remove the pan. Let cool until just warm and then serve immediately or wrap well in plastic and store at room temperature for up to five days.