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+ servings
A cake smothered with caramel and bananas

Sao Tome and Principe Banana Bolo (Banana Cake)

A scrumptious cake with an amazing caramel and banana topping with just the right amount of spice.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Sao Tome and Principe
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 471kcal
Author Darlene at International Cuisine


For the Batter

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour sifted
  • 2 tsp baking powder sifted
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temp
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 tsp lemon juice

For the Topping

  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter cut in small pieces
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ripe bananas peeled sliced diagonally 1/4 inch thick


  • Preheat oven to 350º F.
  • Place rack in the center of the oven.
  • Grease a 9 inch cake pan with butter or a non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and the salt.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Mix in the vanilla extract.
  • Add the egg yolks, one at a time, mixing well after each one.
  • Add the flour mixture, then some milk then repeat until flour mixture and milk is used up.
  • Next, prepare the topping (caramel).
  • To prepare the cake topping: Place the butter, brown sugar, and spices in a small saucepan and stir over medium heat until butter melts and the sugar has dissolved . Without stirring, continue cooking for a few more minutes or until bubbles start to form around the outside edges of the mixture and the sugar begins to caramelize.
  • Then remove from heat, add the vanilla, and stir.
  • Pour into a greased cake pan. Evenly arrange the sliced bananas on top of the caramel.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites at low speed until frothy. Add the lemon juice.
  • Then, beat increasing the speed gradually to high until the whites form a firm peak.
  • With a large rubber spatula gently fold the beaten egg whites into the cake batter.
  • Pour the batter into the caramel and banana lined cake pan. Smooth the top. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven.
  • Place on a wire rack to cool for approximately 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan. Invert the banana cake onto a serving plate. Serve the Banana cake warm.


Calories: 471kcal | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 88mg | Sodium: 105mg | Potassium: 320mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 635IU | Vitamin C: 2.6mg | Calcium: 106mg | Iron: 1.6mg