Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare muffin tins or cake tins.
2 large or 3 small ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Into large bowl of mixer put:
1/2 cup shortening (room temperature) I used butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Beat on medium-high speed for 1 1/2 minutes. Scrap down sides of bowl.
Now add 1/4 cup buttermilk or sour milk into bowl of mixer and mix in quickly.
Add the sifted flour mixture alternately with the mashed banana while beating on a low speed. Scrape down sides of bowl and beat in flour in 3 additions and banana in 2 additions. Mix only until flour has blended in.
Fold in any optional ingredients you may be using such as nuts, chocolate chips, etc.
Divide evenly into prepared pans and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes in preheated oven. Cake is done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely before icing.