Banana Flambé or Bananas Foster is a dessert made out of bananas and vanilla ice cream in a thick sauce made out of butter, sugar and rhum. The process of preparing this dessert is cooking the bananas, butter and sugar; alcohol is then added and ignited; then it is finally topped with vanilla ice cream.
This dish was created by Paul Blangé at Brennan’s Restaurant in New Orleans during 1951, the name came from Richard Foster who is a friend of Owen Brennan who is a restaurateur and founder of Brennan’s Restaurant in the French Quarter which until this day is in business and served this wonderful dessert.
Now you wonder why this dish is ignited? is it for visual presentation or does it really have an effect on the final taste. Well it is both. For visual presentation, this dish is usually prepared in front of the one who will consume it, and then it is ignited and sprinkled with cinnamon powder which sparks while on its way to the surface of the bananas. For flavour, igniting the sauce with alcohol content do change the chemical composition of the food, just imagine what a short burst of 240C (That’s the temperature of the alcohol when burning) would do to the sugar content of this dish. The taste is way much different compared to caramelizing sugar at 160C (that’s the temperature when sugar starts to caramelize) for a longer period of time on stove top.
For this recipe I will use a different banana to have that Filipino twist, I will be using cardaba bananas (saba) as the texture is way much better when it is cooked; it even holds the shape better.
4 ripe cardaba bananas, cut in 4 lengthwise
4 tbsp butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup rum
4 scoops French vanilla ice cream
- In a pan add butter, sugar and bananas, cook in low heat until sugar melts and caramelizes.
- Once bananas are covered with caramel, add rhum carefully then tip over to ignite.
- Sprinkle cinnamon while alcohol is burning.
- Place on 4 slices of banana on a plate then top it with an ice cream scoop.
Note: You can use the normal bananas but add it only once sugar caramelizes. Normal bananas cook easily compared to cardaba bananas. You can also use the caramel that froms like thread when you are cooking and top it on the ice cream.