Sometimes I could truly kick myself for having a recipe saved for so long before finally trying it.  This one had been sitting waiting patiently for a year and a half.  At least for me, it’s easy for banana caramel to be overlooked in favor of something uber chocolatey or maybe something involving cheesecake – but I will not make that mistake again.  These cupcakes are truly divine.  The banana flavor in the cake and the caramel in the frosting are both prominent and compliment each other perfectly.  I am normally not one to play around with baking recipes for fear of a batter that will never solidify or be far too dry, but I did make some alterations to this and they ended up working out really well.  As an added bonus, any recipe that leaves me with a leftover squeeze-bottle full of homemade caramel sauce – well, that’s a winner.

I’m not going to lie – the frosting takes a looong time to make.  It took quite a while for the egg-sugar mixture to reach the desired temperature.  (Next time I’ll be absolutely sure my eggs are at room temperature – I may have skipped that step.)  Not only that, but as you add the butter, it seems like it is never going to come together and you think you just wasted all that time.  But then, you add the last couple pieces and some magical state is reached that transforms it into a nice, thick buttercream.  Finally you mix in the caramel and the texture becomes silky smooth and the flavor the caramel contributes takes this to a whole new level.  It may have been an ordeal to make, but I think it was completely worth the effort.  This may be my new favorite frosting.  Stay tuned next week to see what I did with my leftover caramel (it’s gooood!)

Bananas about bananas?  Check out some other yummy banana treats:
Banana Cream Pie
Banana Biscotti
Roasted Banana Ice Cream
Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies
Banana Crumb Muffins