Desert island dishes is a difficult game for me to play. Choosing one dish over another feels like a minor indiscretion on my part. Surely it is a Sunday dinner with all the oozing gravy. But then what about my need for spice? Or my love of all things Italian? So a spicy tomato pasta it must be. With cheese. But then that leaves me without one of the main joys in life: roasted veg. And roast potatoes. Then there I am, back to square one. Tricky. Very tricky.
But dessert island dish is a much easier game. Banoffee pie wins. No hesitation, no question. Undisputed champion of the desserts.
This pud is a joy from beginning to end. It is ridiculously easy to make and ridiculously delicious to eat. Plus, it offers my very favourite ‘lick-the-bowl’ moment: crushed digestive and warm melted butter. Yes please.
If only I were on a desert island eating just this dessert! I would be very (round) happy girl. So that is next year’s holiday sorted then.
INGREDIENTS (serves 1-8, dependent upon self-control):
For the base
250g digestive biscuits
For the middle
100g dark brown soft sugar
397g tin of condensed milk
For the top
300ml double cream
70g good quality dark chocolate
First, prepare your tin. You want a 20cm round, loose-bottomed one ideally (although, 8 little, individual, loose-bottomed tins would also work), and you should grease it well on the bottom and sides.
On to the base. Crush your biscuits however you will (I like to throw them around the kitchen in their packet a bit, the bash them in a bowl with a rolling pin), until rubble-like but not too sandy.
Melt your butter (100g) then pour it over your biscuit crumbs and mix well.
Tip all your biscuit mix into your prepared tin. Now you need to press you crumb down to make it solid. You can do this two ways: either push it all down on the bottom, which will give you one really deep base (which is how I like mine) or else push it both on the bottom and up the sides, creating a biscuit crust all around the tin.
Whichever way you decide, put it the base into the fridge to solidify for at least 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make your ‘offee’. Melt your butter (100g) and sugar (100g) together over a low to medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar has dissolved. Add the condensed milk, increase the heat, and bring the mix to a boil. Leave the caramel boil ferociously for at least one minute (anything less will mean that it will not set).
Once boiled, pour on top of your chilled base, then return the pie to the fridge, to set. Leave it in the fridge for at least one hour, but ideally until you are about ready to serve the pudding.
Once set, take the tin out of the fridge and carefully transfer the pie from the tin to a serving plate. (As the pie should be quite solid, this is easier than it sounds.)
Slice your bananas and arrange them on top of the caramel.
Whip the double cream up until it retains its shape, then spread this all over the banana layer.
Finally, grate chocolate all over the top of the pie.
You can either serve straight away, or return the completed pie to the fridge to wait until you are ready for it.
I made this pud as part of a meal for some friends that visited us. The main course that preceded it was mushroom, spinach and blue cheese pithivier with roasted new potatoes, corriander and cumin carrots and onion gravy. I didn’t manage to take too many photos as I was too busy being sociable (read: drinking red wine). But here are a few that I did manage…
Just let me know if you want the recipes for any of them!
Also, I would love to know your desert (or dessert) island dishes!