Preheat the oven to 170deg. C and line a line a 22cm loose bottom dish with as much foil as it takes to make it batter tight. The mixture is quite liquid, so I put a length of foil over the round base, then slid the base into the collar, therefore making it watertight.
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup boiling water
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 eggs, beaten
3 bananas - mashed
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 3/4 cups flour
Place oil in a large mixing bowl and with a whisk stir in the following ingredients one at a time: cream, espresso, water vanilla, eggs, sugar, salt and lastly baking powder. Mix in the banana.
Add the sifted flour and cocoa to the wet mixture and mix well until combined.
Pour into the lined tin.
Bake for 1 and a half hours, then check by inserting a skewer into the cake to see if it comes out clean.
Mine required an additional 10 minutes. Cool the cake in the tin.
Toffee Frosting - a toffee sugar style Italian meringue frosting
1 tablespoon liquid glucose
3 egg whites
Separate the eggs. Reserve the egg yolks for another recipe. Beat the egg whites until firm peaks form. Not so much as the whites start to look dry, just stiff enough to stand up when the beater head is raised out of the mixture.
Place sugar, glucose and water into a small saucepan and heat until it reaches 135deg. C. on the sweet thermometer. Don't stir it once it starts to boil or the syrup will turn grainy. It should look a golden toffee colour.
With the beater motor running, add the toffee to the egg whites a drop at a time. The eggs will form a smooth glossy toffee coloured frosting. The heat cooks the egg whites so no further cooking is needed.
Don't worry if little toffee bits stay in the frosting. It just adds to the affect.
Mum's trusty and very old - like 40 years - Kenwood mixer didn't miss a beat.
With no time to waste, spread the frosting onto the cake before it sets. The recipe makes plenty so you can afford to be generous.
We didn't have 30 candles, so settled for bananas instead. I tossed them in lemon juice so they wouldn't go brown.
Brenna getting extra help with her birthday candles.
Happy birthday Brenna. Thanks for sharing your birthday with us. Happy days up at the farm!