Bananas Foster

So.  Here’s the thing about bananas foster, I hadn’t had it until just recently when Brian blogged about it.  His blog was full of fond memories of flambe-ing in the new year with bananas foster and family.  Touching and pretty much the best idea of how to bring in a new year ever, fire and sweets – yes please.  I got all the stuff and made it for BF and I to ring in the new year, that first time I messed it up, my sugar crystallized because I heated it up too quickly and it separated a little bit from the butter, but it was tasty and the fire was mighty attractive :).

So I tried it again, when a friend came over for dinner later in January, and again when my big sister was living with me.  It was a simple and fast dessert, something that tasted like it was a lot of work but wasn’t and it took at max 10 minutes to come together in a magical and oh-so-satisfying buttery way.

Recently, my sister came over for dinner on a night when we were supposed to go out, we got lazy and decided youtube videos were a much more entertaining prospect than dinner somewhere we couldn’t be loud and ridiculous.  So I did what any sensible person with a pretty bare fridge would do, I ran up the street to Arax for some dinner essentials; cauliflower, red pepper and pasta quick easy dinner fixings.  As I was getting ready to leave the store, and lamenting that I had missed the black figs they had on sale, one of the owners asked me if I could use some overripe bananas.  I said sure, thinking that I could make banana bread or a banana smoothie.  He handed me 14 bananas.  Not only was going to make banana bread and a banana smoothie but the strawberries I had just purchased for dessert were going in the fridge and bananas foster was dessert.  I went to the liquor store and got some nice dark rum and headed home.

When my big sister got there for dinner we ate – pasta with cauliflower and asiago.  Then we (she, BF and I) watched the Old Spice you tube videos with Fabio and Old Spice Guy (for the record, I’m in the Fabio camp here).  We giggled a lot and then I suggested we make dessert.  Big Sis perked up and asked what I was making, I told her and walked into the kitchen.  She followed begging me for the recipe.  I handed her my camera and told her that I would blog it if she would take pictures of the process.  Done.  So here it is – Bananas Foster with my big sister’s blessing and BF’s whole hearted approval.

Bananas Foster
Adapted from My Food Thoughts
Note:  Be careful as this is addictive, it can serve four people but two will polish it off just as easily.

1 stick butter, unsalted
1/2 cup dark brown sugar (I prefer the stronger flavor of the dk but light is fine if you want it less caramelly)
1/2-1 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
4-5 ripe bananas, peeled and cut into managable pieces, I like sixths
1/4 cup rum (I used Kraken, because it’s got an octopus on the bottle)
vanilla ice cream or greek yogurt (for serving)

In a wide skillet melt the butter over medium heat.  Once the butter is melted add the brown sugar and cinnamon, stir well.  I find it’s best to sort of spread the brown sugar around the pan in a sprinkle as opposed to adding it in a lump to the middle, that will make it not blend with the butter.  Once the brown sugar and butter are incorporated add the banana pieces.  Cook one side of the bananas for about one minute then flip them and cook the other side.  They will be a nice caramel color.  Have a second person in the kitchen turn out the lights, for dramatic effect.  Add the rum.  Light it on fire.  Watch the rum burn off in pretty blues and oranges, be careful to keep anything flammable (like yourself) well away at this point.  Turn the lights back on.    Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream or plain greek yogurt to a bowl.  Scoop as much of the bananas foster onto it as you can eat.  Eat it all.  Then sneak back into the kitchen for seconds.  or thirds. I won’t tell.  I promise.