Gift of the Magi Cake (Quick Bread) - - Marcelle Bienvenu

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Lighter than a traditional fruit cake, and similar to banana bread, this Gift of the Magi Cake is perfect to serve on the Epiphany on January 6th (the twelfth day of Christmas). L'Epiphanie, or le jour des Rois, is the feast day celebrating the newborn Christ being visited by the Magi.

Source: Marcelle Bienvenu, "New "Gift of the Magi" cake is for Carnival season." The Times-Picayune [New Orleans]. NOLA Media Group, n. pag. 6 Jan. 2011. Web. 20 Dec. 2012. <>.

ID:  R00293

Makes: Two loaves  


Cake / bread:
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, + 1 tsp
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup mashed bananas (about 2 medium)
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cups sliced almonds (divided use)
  • 1/2 cup chopped maraschino cherries (or 1/2 cup butterscotch chips)
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • 1 (11-oz) can mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1 cup flaked coconut

  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp milk

Optional garnish:


01. Advance preparations:  Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease 2 (8- x 4-inch) loaf pans.

02. In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and the vanilla. Combine 2 cups flour with the baking soda and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with the bananas.

03. Toss the chocolate chips, 1/2 cup almonds, the cherries (or butterscotch chips), dates and oranges with the remaining 1 tsp flour.

04.  Add the coconut and floured chips, nuts and fruits to the batter and mix gently. Pour into the prepared pans; sprinkle with the remaining almonds.

05.  Bake in preheated oven:  Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about fifty to fifty-five (50 to 55) minutes. Cool for ten (10) minutes before removing the cake from the pans to cool completely on a wire rack.

06.  Prepare glaze and garnish as desired:  Whisk together Glaze ingredients until smooth; drizzle over cakes. If desired, sprinkle with Mardi Gras Colored Sugars.