Bake the Book: Banana Upside-Down Cake with Malted Pudding

[Photograph: Ben Fink Photography]

We've saved the best for last with this Puddin' creation. If you've been paying attention to the last two recipes, this one should be a snap: malted milk pudding forms the wiggly middle of this banana cake frosted with walnut buttercream. Bananas and nuts are an idiot-proof combination, but the addition of malted milk is like having a milkshake in cake form. Which is to say, excellent.

Tips: The easiest way to make this cake with a minimal amount of stress is to prepare the pudding the day before, and save the layer-making and assembly for the day you intend to serve it. Before filling the cake with pudding, take care that your buttercream wall is thick and strong. It helps if the pudding is nice and cold from the fridge.

Tweaks: There's creaminess from the frosting, malted sweetness from the pudding, and crumbly lightness from the cake layers—all that's missing is a little crunch. Sure, you can paint the top layer of the cake with simple syrup, but sprinkling it with demerara or turbinado sugar gives it a textural contrast.

As always with our Bake the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Puddin' to give away.