Spiced Banana Tea Cake with Dried Cherries
2 cups boiling water
1 3/4 cups unbleached flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup sugar or natural sweetener
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1 large egg or egg replacement mixture for 1 egg
2 T corn oil or other mild-tasting oil
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped dried cherries
1. Place a rack or trivet in a 6 quart slow cooker (I used crumpled up aluminum foil). Add the boiling water, cover, and turn the heat setting to High. Lightly oil a baking pan (I used one of my smaller mixing bowls) that will fit in the cooker and set aside.
2. In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Add the sugar and stir to combine.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the bananas, egg or egg replacement, oil, and vanilla. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture about one-third at a time, mixing well as you go. Fold in the cherries.
4. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and cover with aluminum foil, making several holes in the foil for steam to escape. Place on the rack, cover, and cook on High for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
5. Take the cake out of the cooker, remove the aluminum foil, and let cool for 15 minutes before serving.
(Note: the recipe did not suggest this, but of my own accord I stuck a clean, empty tomato paste can (greased) into the center of the batter in my baking pan -- just for my own peace of mind to make certain it baked in the middle. Once cooled, up-ended on a plate and the can removed, it looked like a mini bundt (and is very moist, like a steamed pudding). Anyway, I whipped this up this afternoon, then left the house for several hours while it baked. How handy...!)