I’m sick in bed today. Thank goodness there are two pots of chicken soup simmering on the stovetop. I have a giant white cat called Bunny to cuddle. I have a sheepskin, that looks identical to the giant white cat, to keep me warm. This might be a silly time to post a banoffee pie recipe because hell, there’s no way I’m in any state to eat anything other than broth. But I have hope. There will be a time in the future when I will be well enough to eat pie. I will be well, like I was well a couple of weeks ago when we took this very pie to Aaron and Maryanne’s house where we ate pizza and drunk too much red wine. Maryanne is very pregnant and could only eat bites at a time. So this pie was really for Aaron, and gosh it was good.
for the pastry:
(from Tessa Kiros’ Apples for Jam)
Traditionally banoffee has a biscuit crumb base, but we had some dough in the freezer from a previous pie, so we simply used this, and it worked beautifully.
600g plain flour
1 tsp salt
400g butter, cut into cubes
2 free-range eggs, lightly beaten
4 tsp white wine vinegar
Put the flour in a large bowl with salt. Work in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine sand. Add the eggs, milk and vinegar. Continue working the mixture until it comes together in a loose dough. Separate into two balls of dough, flatten a little, cover in cling wrap and refrigerate for an hour or so. You’ll only need one round of dough here, put the other in the freezer for use whenever. When your dough has rested, roll out the pastry on a floured surface. Blind bake in a flan tin, that’s lightly greased, in a moderate oven, lining the pastry with baking paper and weighing it down with rice or beans so it holds its shape. Bake for 10 mins with the beans in place, then remove them and bake your pastry for another 5 mins until the shell is cooked through.
for the caramel
100g caster sugar
395 condensed milk
pinch of sea salt
Melt the butter, salt and sugar over low heat until golden in colour and the sugar has dissolved. Add the condensed milk and stirring constantly, bring to the boil. Cook, watching and stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes more, until the caramel is thick and coloured. Be careful not the burn the caramel.
for the topping
2 large ripe bananas, sliced
200ml cream, whipped until thick
to assemble the pie
Pour the hot caramel into the blind baked pastry shell and smooth. Refrigerate until firm. When firm remove from the fridge and arrange the sliced bananas over the caramel. We like to have a high ratio of bananas to caramel because it’s just so sweet and the pie should taste of banana over and above the caramel. Fill the remaining section of the pie crust with whipped cream, smoothing the cream into a round peak. Refrigerate until serving.