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BackstoryA very simple dish that goes great over ice cream, crepes, French toast, etc... Very showy, too.
First thing's first:
Always have a lid for the pan and a fire extinguisher - just in case. The bananas basically poach in the syrup, and they do so very quickly. That's why using underripe (i.e., all yellow - no brown spots but no green) is recommended. They'll hold up a little better, and the heat from the sauce will convert the sugars in the bananas (in effect ripening them in the pan). Most, but not all, of the alcohol will burn off during the flambe, but if you can't have any alcohol, you'll want to make something else. This recipe is Alton Brown's, but you can find similar ones just about anywhere.
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup (1.75 oz) dark brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 tbsp banana liqueur (optional)
- 2 underripe bananas, sliced in half lengthwise
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest
- Melt butter in a 10" heavy skillet over low heat. Add brown sugar, allspice, and nutmeg and stir until the sugar dissolves.
- Add banana liqueur (if using) and bring sauce to a simmer.
- Add bananas, keeping them evenly spaced in the pan, and cook for one minute on each side, carefully spooning the sauce over bananas as they are cooking.
- Remove bananas from pan to a serving dish.
- Bring sauce back to a simmer and carefully add rum.
- If the sauce is very hot, the rum will flame all by itself.
- If not, use a stick lighter or fireplace match to ignite and continue cooking until flame dies out, approximately 1 to 2 minutes.
- If the sauce is too thin, cook for 1 to 2 minutes longer until syrupy in consistency.
- Add orange zest and stir to combine.
- Immediately spoon sauce over bananas and serve.