recipe

“I thought it would taste weird because of the tahini and sesame seeds, but it was heaven and we cannot wait to make it again.” — Max, recipe tester, age 10

safety
  • Uses the oven
  • Uses a knife
difficulty
  • Beginner
time
  • 1½ hours, plus 2 hours cooling time
yield
  • Serves 12

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Prepare Ingredients

Vegetable oil spray
1½ cups (7½ ounces)
all-­purpose flour
½ teaspoon
salt
½ teaspoon
baking soda
3
very ripe bananas (skins should be speckled black)
4 tablespoons
unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces and softened
1¼ cups (8¾ ounces)
sugar
⅓ cup
tahini
2
large eggs
¾ teaspoon
vanilla extract
¼ cup (2 ounces)
whole milk
2 teaspoons
sesame seeds

Gather Baking Equipment

8-­inch square metal baking pan
2
bowls (1 large, 1 medium)
Whisk
Large fork or potato masher
1-­cup dry measuring cup
Electric mixer (stand mixer with paddle attachment or handheld mixer and large bowl)
Rubber spatula
Toothpick
Oven mitts
Cooling rack
Cutting board
Chef's knife
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1
 
Vegetable oil spray

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray inside bottom and sides of 8-­inch square metal baking pan with vegetable oil spray. Line bottom of baking pan with 8-­inch square piece of parchment paper.

 
2
 
1½ cups (7½ ounces)
all-­purpose flour
½ teaspoon
salt
½ teaspoon
baking soda

In medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking soda.

 
3
 
3
very ripe bananas (skins should be speckled black)

Peel bananas and place in large bowl. Use large fork or potato masher to mash bananas until broken down but still chunky. Measure out 1 cup mashed bananas (discard any extra).

 
4
 
4 tablespoons
unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces and softened
1¼ cups (8¾ ounces)
sugar
⅓ cup
tahini

In bowl of stand mixer (or large bowl if using handheld mixer), combine softened butter, sugar, and tahini. Lock bowl into place and attach paddle to stand mixer, if using. Start mixer on medium-­high speed. Beat until mixture is light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.

 
5
 
2
large eggs
¾ teaspoon
vanilla extract

Add eggs and beat until combined, about 30 seconds. Add mashed bananas and vanilla and beat until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Stop mixer.

 
6
 
¼ cup (2 ounces)
whole milk

Carefully add half of flour mixture. Start mixer on low speed and mix until combined, about 1 minute. With mixer running, slowly pour in milk and mix until combined, about 30 seconds. Stop mixer.

 
7
 

Add remaining flour mixture. Start mixer on low speed and mix until well combined, about 1 minute. Stop mixer. Remove bowl from stand mixer, if using.

 
8
 
2 teaspoons
sesame seeds

Use rubber spatula to scrape down sides of bowl and stir in any remaining dry flour. Use rubber spatula to scrape batter into parchment-­lined baking pan and smooth top (make sure to spread batter into corners to create even layer). Sprinkle sesame seeds over top.

 
9
 

Place baking pan in oven. Bake until cake is deep golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes.

 
10
 

Use oven mitts to remove baking pan from oven (ask an adult for help). Place baking pan on cooling rack and let cake cool completely in pan, about 2 hours.

 
11
 

Remove cake from baking pan and discard parchment. Cut cake into pieces and serve.