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Banoffee Pie from The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries

by Grace Bonney

Excerpted from <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Fat-Radish-Kitchen-Diaries/dp/0847843343/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1418145190&sr=8-1&keywords=the+fat+radish+cookbook">The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries</a>, Rizzoli  2014, Photographs by Nicole Franzen.
If you’ve never heard of Banoffee Pie, be prepared to discover your new favorite dessert. My favorite dessert flavor combination of all time is chocolate and banana, so when I had my first bite of Banoffee years ago, I was an instant fan. Banoffee Pie is an English tradition of pie with bananas, cream and toffee made from boiled condensed milk. Most versions I’ve tried have chocolate drizzled on top or built into the pie, but it’s not required if you’d prefer to stick to the banana-toffee combo. One of my favorite versions comes from a restaurant on the border of the Lower East Side and Chinatown in Manhattan, The Fat Radish.

Excerpted from <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Fat-Radish-Kitchen-Diaries/dp/0847843343/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1418145190&sr=8-1&keywords=the+fat+radish+cookbook">The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries</a>, Rizzoli  2014, Photographs by Nicole Franzen.
Run by Ben Towill and Phil Winser along with chef Nick Wilber, The Fat Radish is something of a mecca for health-conscious eaters who love food. They serve a Macro Bowl that is a favorite of just about everyone I know these days, but I tend to be drawn toward their sweeter offerings. This pie is a great example and is one of the many delicious recipes from their debut cookbook, The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries. Julia co-authored the cookbook with Ben and Phil and I had the pleasure of trying just about every recipe in this book during the process, but this pie was at the very top of my list. Whether you’re looking for something special and unexpected to bring to a holiday party or just want to try something new at home, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed. xo, grace

Photographs by Nicole Franzen

Excerpted from The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries, Rizzoli 2014, Photographs by Nicole Franzen.

Banoffee Pie

Banoffee pie is basically what happens when a banana bumps into toffee and then, together, they collide with a chocolate pastry crust and clouds of whipped cream. As the story goes, it was invented in a pub in Sussex called The Hungry Monk in 1972. We fell in love with it at home in England and, luckily, our American customers love it too.

Makes 1 pie

Crust

-8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
-¼ cup icing sugar
-2 egg yolks
-½ teaspoon vanilla extract
-1 cup flour
-¼ cup cocoa powder
-¼ teaspoon salt

Filling

-½ cup sugar
-4 tablespoons unsalted butter
-1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

Assembly

-3 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
-2 cups heavy cream, whipped
-½ cup coarsely grated dark chocolate

For the crust, place the butter and icing sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks and the vanilla extract. Fold in the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Press the dough into a pie pan. Prick the surface all over with a fork and refrigerate it for 30 minutes.

Bake the crust in a 350ºF oven until it’s firm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature.

While the crust is cooling, place the filling ingredients into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring now and then, until the mixture forms a thick caramel, about 20 minutes. Pour the filling into the tart crust and let it cool to room temperature. Top with the sliced bananas, spread the whipped cream over the bananas, and finish with the grated chocolate. Refrigerate the pie for at least an hour before slicing and serving.

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Comments

  • I’m an American married to an Englishman, and many shops and restaurants in the UK advertise banoffee pie as being an American favorite, or even an American tradition (funny, because I never heard of it over here until this very minute!).

  • A general question: the emails have been kind of wonky since you did the redesign, with some images in duplicate and text line lengths that don’t fit to the window size anymore. Just thought I’d pipe up in case these are glitches that can be fixed.
    (using Mail 6.6 on a desktop mac)

  • Love Banoffee pie! My trick for the caramel filling is actually quite simple: in a large pot of water, add 3-4 cans of unsweetened condensed milk. Add water until well covered, and bring the entire thing to a boil. Don’t disturb for 1.5 hours (except to add more water if it gets low.) Remove the cans with tongs and cool to room temp. Voila! Four cans of ready-to-use toffee (you still only need to use one per pie). Save the others for a rainy day, or when you get a hankering.

  • I am in Chicago. I have heard of this, but in England, or on BBC America British programming, never here. I have never seen it. Do they consider this a Banana cream pie, but even that doesn’t have toffee.

  • You can buy cans of condensed milk in shops in the UK now that have already been made into toffee for you. If you boil your own cans in water, make a tiny hole in the top with a hammer and nail first to release the pressure. Some cans have been known to burst open during boiling. A tiny bit of the milk will seep out the top, but it doesn’t affect the end result.

  • Save yourself time and trouble and use dulce de leche instead of processing condensed milk … It’s the same thing.

  • just made this for a dinner party. What a disaster! The filling turned into a hard lump. After spreading over the crust and filling with bananas and cream, it became a rock hard crust. We ended up with bananas and cream for dessert.

  • I believe the pie is Scottish . On our summer holiday every year in Scotland it is our favorite dessert! I have tried to make it here in the states but the results were soupy. I plan to try again!

  • I’m such an idiot I didnt realise that the name is an amalgam of banana and toffee. For years I presumed it must have been invented by an Italian called Signor Banoffee! I make it with a crushed biscuit and melted butter base like a cheesecake.

  • Great idea but recipe needs some serious tweaking! Crust was a thick, rock hard disc that was basically inedible. Toffee was also too hard and did not mix at all with bananas. The concept is delicious but would try a different recipe.

  • ben- i planned on making this dessert for the holiday. i’m hoping that you can give me some pointers on the pie. did you fold in the flour, or mix it in? this could be a cause for the hard crust. as for the filling- could you make any recommendations on how to loosen it up?

    GRACE- have you successfully made this pie?

    thanks!
    brooke

  • i made this for xmas eve and itwas a HUGE hit. A few of my recipe comments below.

    I used a regular sized tart pan which was too short. I had to mound the cream to get it in. It still held together okay when cutting. Next time I’ll use a deep dish pie dish.

    I sifted the salt, flour, and cocoa powder together before folding them all together into the butter until just combined.

    Otherwise followed as directed.

  • Just made this according to instructions and it came out beautifully. I used a ceramic 9″ pie dish, and as for the flour I added the flour/cocoa/salt, I also sifted them first, then added to the stand mixer as it was running on low speed. Hope it’s helpful, here’s a pic I took prior to devouring: http://imgur.com/3e6IZMO

  • i made the pie and it was absolutely delicious. my family of 12 all loved it. i’ll definitely be making it again.
    as was mentioned, i too, combined the dry ingredients before folding them into the wet. the toffee was simple. it did crystalize a bit so i put it through a sieve before pouring it into the crust.
    i definitely recommend this pie!

  • I just made this pie. I didn’t have the type of pie tin used in the recipe, so i put it in the bottom of a springform pan like you would use for a cheesecake.
    I am a lazy person, so I didn’t make the filling, and just bought a jar of dulce de leche. If I were to make it again, I would probably make a few changes. I would add more bananas, and use half the whip cream, and would add a little sugar to to the whip cream. I felt like the dulce de leche part of the pie was sweet, but with the not very sweet crust and the unsweetened whip cream – the whole thing needed a touch more sugar.

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