Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Banofee Pie: the easiet pie in the world


My friend Dina recently gave birth to a beautiful and healthy baby girl. Me and Dina go long back, not too long, but she was probably one of the first friends I had when I moved to Kuwait. We worked together for almost four years. She has put up with my irritability, impatience and above my never ending for perfection. As you can see, am probably not the best to work with, but I make a pretty cool friend, or so I like to think.

Anyway, through out the years I knew Dina, food has always been a common interset of ours. We always shared recipes, tips, shortcuts etc... Dina was more the chef, who cooked but couldn't bake to save her life, while I was the baker, who baked but couldn't cook to save her life.

So when I was visiting her, I knew I had to prepare a dessert that is fit for a mother who just gave birth. The dessert should be easy, simple and most importantly, does not require baking. At the same time, I wanted something that says "I've been standing in the kitchen all day making this", something that is a total indulgent, and above all, something to feed our sweet tooth..

There is only one dessert that fit into that portfolio: Banoffee Pie. 

Banoffe is  classic English pie, its basically a biscuit crust, topped with toffee, bananas and whipped cream.To spice things up, add in some chocolate flakes.

Its probably the easiest pie in the world.

Skills required to make this dessert:
  • Using the food processor to make the biscuit crust
  • Boiling a can of Neslte condensed milk submerged in water (or you can cheat, and buy a jar a ready made caramel)
  • Slicing 3 to 4 bananas
  • Using the mixer to whip whipping cream
As you can see from the list above, a person who probably never set foot in the kitchen can make this dessert. 

The only thing about this dessert is that it need some prepartion in advance, the biscuit base needs to be left to set in the fridge for a few hours, and the caramel need time to simmer on low heat.

You will also a 9" pie pan with removable bottom, this will make it easier to remove the pie.

I have a super easy way to make caramel. It involves boiling a can of condensed milk for two and half hours. This will make golden and shiny caramel that is not overly sweet or creamy. Just make sure when boiling the condensed milk:
  • Always keep the can submerged in water, else it might explode.
  • The boiling time is two and half hours on low heat.
  • You can boil more than one can in the same pot. To stock up on caramel.

Banofee Pie


For the biscuit filling:
1 small package or 250 g Digestive Biscuits
1/2 cup or 100g melted butter
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa

For the Caramel:
1 can Nestle condensed milk (almost 375 g)

For the Filling:
3 Large bananas
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup (250 ml) whipping cream
2 tablespoons icing sugar, sifted

For Decoration:
Cadbury Flake or any chocolate flakes


First make the biscuit base.

  1. Process the biscuits and cocoa powder in the bowl food processor until they resemble fine crumbs. Alternatively, you could just put them in a zip lock bag and roll them with your rolling pin.
  2. Add the melted butter and cocoa powder. Process until the biscuits have absorbed the butter. About one minute.
  3. Press the biscuit base into the 9" tart pan.
  4. Leave it to set in fridge for at least three hours.
Second, Make the caramel.
  1. Immerse closed the closed can of condensed milk in a large pot filled with cold water.
  2. Leave on a simmer or light boil for 2 and 1/2 hours topping off with water as needed. Be careful not let the water go below the level of the can, else you'll be cleaning caramel of your kitchen ceiling.
  3. Remove from heat but wait for about an hour before opening it. Till at least the can is at room temperature.
Third, the bananas.
  1. Slice the bananas vertically or diagonally, whichever your prefer.
  2. Brush the bananas with the lemon juice. This will prevent the bananas from blackening.
Fourth, the whipping cream.
  1. Using the electric mixer, whip the whipping cream until soft peaks form. 
  2. Shift the icing sugar into the cream. The icing sugar will help the cream hold its shape.
Finally, assemble the pie.
  1. Spread the caramel over the base.
  2. Place the bananas on top of the caramel base.
  3. Spread the whipping cream on the bananas.
  4. Top the pie with dollops of whipped cream.
  5. Decorate with chocolate flakes, or dust with cocoa. Or both :)
  6. Serve immediately.

Voilà.. The easiest pie in the world. 

To Dina, wishing you and your dear daughter the best of years to come. I hope you liked this pie as much as I do...

See you all next recipe...

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