When I first saw this recipe in Chef Gregoire Michaud's Never Skip Dessert last year, I had eagerly bookmarked it. I remember thinking to myself, this is like a creme brulee in a banana - as opposed to the banana in creme brulee which I had made before... :) The clever quirkiness of this dish appeals to me and the recipe seems easy enough. Chef Michaud had included a Yuzu Thyme Ice Cream as a second component to this dish. I decided I can cut myself some slack and serve it with a store bought vanilla ice cream. Easy peasy, no?
But little had I expected to work through a whole bunch of bananas and still not get a decent shot at this.... Don't get me wrong, the preparation of the baked banana was simple enough and it tasted delicious with a crispy crust of caramelised sugar on top.
What stumped me was that wretched scoop of ice cream! Getting the ice cream to thaw to just the right texture to get a perfect quenelle proved to be especially tricky! By the time I got the ice cream to thaw / freeze right, the bananas had wilted out on me. Then, by the time I baked a second batch of bananas, the sky turned impossibly dark as stormy weather set in.... I had no choice but to do this again the next day and this time round, I decided to just skip the scoop of ice cream altogether.
This is a great great way to serve a tropical dessert. If you like bananas, the sweetness of the fruit pairs really well with the vanilla custard.
Be sure to use a ripe banana to ensure the best flavour and do not get alarmed when your banana turns black in the oven. I actually find it quite cool to plate a charcoal black banana.... :)
Recipe : (from Never Skip Dessert by Gregoire Michaud)
3 pcs Large curved bananas
1 pc Vanilla pod (scraped to get vanilla beans)
1. Boil milk, cream, sugar and vanilla beans.
2. Strain this into eggs and mix well
3. Preheat oven to 190C.
4. Slice the banana length wise in half.
5. Remove the pulp from the banana. Chop up the pulp and lay a few pieces in the banana skin.
6. Place the banana on a baking tray and fill it with the custard cream.
7. Bake at 190C for 20mins.
8. Remove from oven and sprinkle with sugar. Using a blow torch, caramelise the sugar.