BEST BANANA CAKE IN THE WORLDThis is not a food blog, it’s a “Worldwide guide to urban travel” and today is my partner’s birthday.

I woke up dreaming of our favorite banana cake. I woke up dreaming of how I was going to get that special perfect bliss cake here to the city of San Francisco from Los Gatos, CA now that I don’t own that red-hot speedy Mini Cooper any longer. I need an amazing birthday cake and I need it now.

First thing that came to mind is to email TaskRabbit. Their folks hop around the city running tasks and completing things that a full time fine artist, writer, high functioning lifestyle, multitasking person, cannot possibly get to in one day. Love me some of those hippity hopping TaskRabbits! Second thing popping into the brain was, OH MY GAWD – I could actually bake a cake!

Nope, Shelly baking a cake is not likely to happen in this lifetime. I will gladly manage box cupcakes and rainbow sprinkles for grandchildren, and whip up some lame tart thingy with yellow lemon curd spread lathered on the crust with a beautifully sliced kiwi and a couple of strawberries or two for a dinner party. I definitely, no can do, a gourmet, homemade, decadent, melt in your teeth, make me swoon and have that party dance around in my mouth, kind of cake.

The gourmet, decadent, scrumptious, incredible creamy banana cake at my daughters storybook wedding, the banana cake we buy for graduations, the banana cake I would order for every birthday (when we lived down south and I actually owned a car), the banana cake we buy for baby showers, the go to cake, cookie, rice crispy treat  “eat something sweet every day” shop, the banana cake I woke up dreaming about is……….THE BEST BANANA CAKE IN THE WORLD at ICING ON THE CAKE in Los Gatos, CA!

If you are not so inclined to drive your sweet self to Los Gatos, CA for THE BEST BANANA CAKE IN THE WORLD, perhaps the best coconut cake (in my world) might suffice in a pinch.



4 cups toasted shredded Bakers Coconut (2 cups for frosting) (2 cups for cake)

1 box yellow Duncan Hines cake mix

1 small box vanilla instant pudding

1 1/3 cups water

4 eggs

1/4 cup peanut oil (or safflower)

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts



4 tablespoons butter

2 cups of above toasted coconut

1 package 8 oz cream cheese

2 teaspoons milk

3 ½ cups powdered sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla

Blend all ingredients (except coconut and nuts) at medium speed for four minutes. Then stir in coconut and nuts. Grease and flour three nine inch layer pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Very important to cool cake in pans half hour. Remove from pans and frost the cake. VOILA!


Definition of Urban Backpacker:

1. Of, relating to, or located in a city.

2. Backpacker redefined: Artful reviews that lead you from hidden budget gems to five-star destinations helping you find palate pleasing adventure, enjoyment, and story collection.

3. Pack bag. Travel there. See city. Eat food. Respect culture. Take picture. Share story. Be thankful. Repeat.