Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Caramel banana pie (and a trip down memory lane)

Caramel banana pie

We have been celebrating Father's Day with a get together/lunch at my house ever since I got married, in 2005. I love it - besides my father, who is the star of the day, my brother and sister come too and they are both great people to have around (of course I'm biased. And I don't care). :)

Since I didn't want to make the same old desserts again (the sweetened condensed milk custard is my usual choice), I called my dad and asked what he wanted for dessert - he's not into sweets and not into chocolate, so I had to ask him.
His answer was a big surprise: "I'd like to have that banana pie your mother used to make for me. The one with the "dough snakes" on top".
"Ok, of course, I'll make it".

The thing is...



…I don't have the original recipe. I remembered my mother's banana pie, even in a detailed sort of way, but that was all. No recipe!!!! I started to panic.

My salvation: a recipe for pie crust found in Bon Appetit (July issue) + remembering a pie filling I used to make as a teenager for fruit pies + memories of the caramel banana topping.

My father loved the pie and told me it was exactly like my mom's. Even though I know he said that not to hurt my feelings, there's a smile on my face every time I think of his words. :D

Caramel banana pie

2 ½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1.25cm (½-inch) cubes
½ cup chilled lard or frozen nonhydrogenated solid vegetable shortening, cut 1.25cm (½-inch) cubes – I used regular vegetable shortening
5 tablespoons (or more) ice water – I needed 6

2 cups (480ml) + 3 tablespoons milk
5 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons corn starch
1 egg yolk - I forgot to add but I liked the result anyway
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

6 small bananas, sliced - approx. 2 1/2 cups
1 ½ cups sugar

Start making the crust: Blend flour, sugar and salt in processor. Add butter and lard; using on/off turns, blend until mixture resembles coarse meal. If making by hand (which I did): pinch and rub flour and fat between your thumb and fingertips (this works well if you have cook hands).
Transfer mixture to medium bowl. Add 5 tablespoons ice water and mix with fork until dough begins to clump together, adding more water by teaspoonfuls if dry. Gather dough together. Divide dough – I used ¾ of the dough for the crust and ¼ for the “snakes”; flatten each part into disk. Wrap each disk in plastic and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Dough can be made 3 days ahead. Keep refrigerated. If necessary, soften slightly at room temperature before rolling out.

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/355ºF.
Roll out dough from the center out, lifting and rotating it frequently, clockwise and counterclockwise – I kept the dough wrapped in plastic while rolling it out.
Using the rolling pin, transfer the dough from countertop to pan (22cm/8.5in) and unfold it. Press it gently on the pan and cut off excess.
Blind bake until the crust starts to get golden; remove from the oven.

For the filling: pour 2 cups milk into a medium saucepan. Add sugar and mix well.
In a cup or small bowl, mix the 3 tablespoons milk and the corn starch until well dissolved. Add to saucepan and mix well.
Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until cream thickens.
Remove from heat, add vanilla and mix well. Set aside to cool, stirring every now and then to keep it free of lumps.

Make the topping: Place sugar in a large saucepan and cook it over low heat until caramels forms. Add the bananas, being careful not to get burned. Stir every once in a while and cook over low heat until the bananas soften and melt a little.
Remove from heat and set aside.

Assemble the pie: Pour the filling over crust and top it with the banana caramel mixture.
Make “snakes” with the remaining chilled dough and place them on the top of the pie, forming a sort of lattice effect.
Bake again, in a 200ºC/390ºF oven, this time for 25-30 minutes, until the “snakes” are baked.
Set aside to cool and refrigerate before serving.

Serves 8.

Caramel banana pie


Anonymous said...

Do you know that I have never seen a pie like this one... very unusual and interesting. I will save the recipe for teh future.

Anonymous said...

Even if it's not the original recipe it certainly looks delicious! And I'm sure your dad thought so too :) I love feeding my family and am horribly biased about them as well ;)

Anonymous said...

Ohh, this looks fantastic...! Sort of like a backwards banoffee pie (where there's caramel or dulce de leche on the bottom and bananas on top.) Brilliant interpretation!

Haalo said...

Oh my Patricia that is delicious - can we swap a piece?

Deborah said...

This looks delicious - especially the topping!!

Anonymous said...

Patricia, when will I ever learn to not visit your blog this close to lunch? This sounds fabulous! And even better is the story of how your recipe came together. Your family is very lucky that you're part of it, my friend.

Anonymous said...

Your pie looks so tasty! I love your dad's description of the "dough snakes." Congratulations on recreating a memorable pie without the recipe!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Oh, Patricia, your dad sounds like a dear. And that pie is out of this world! Love your "dough snakes." ;)

Amy said...

Aw that's so sweet, parents are always full of surprises. :) The pie looks delish!

eatme_delicious said...

yum looks good. :)

Manggy said...

Aw, that's sweet of your dad..
Looks yummy. Must file this under recipes to try, thanks!

Susan said...

Great, great pie, Patricia. I love all the variations on caramel desserts. Thank goodness for melted sugar!

Unknown said...

"Dough snakes" that's so cute! That pie looks delicious - your dad is ver lucky!

Meeta K. Wolff said...

Oh this is awesome. I want to crawl in there and eat my way out!!

Pat said...

Ohhhhhhh that looks soooooooo yummy!!! I am putting on calories just looking at it!!!! YUM!!!

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

And now you've created your own special recipe that you can make for your father again next year. Yum.

Anonymous said...

It's so nice that you put all of that effort into replicating your mother's recipe for your father. I imagine that had to have felt good too. The internet is amazing now with all these food blogs and recipe sites - they're such useful tools for times like this!

test it comm said...

This looks and sounds great. I really like baking with bananas!

Anh said...

I am touched by your story, Pat! One of my quests is to bake the perfect Rusian black bread for my dad, but i havent figured out the recipe as yet.

And your banana tart looks wonderful. I am not a big fan of banana, but they are so good in baking!

Karlz + Ma said...

Mm, sounds a little like a banoffee pie :)! A cardiac arrest and yumminess on a plate, well done!

Anonymous said...

Patricia--I'm sure your dad really meant what he said. This looks beautiful.

Elle said...

Such a gorgeous pie...I can imagine the taste combination of the vanilla, bannanas and caramel, plus crunch crust...your dad was probably not just humoring you.

Big Boys Oven said...

Looks so yummy.... love caramel and banana.. well captured and great craft.

ayseyaman said...

Hi Patricia
you made your father the luckiest father. :) You are very kind!
Banana pie is so delicious and looks diffirent. I have never tried it before. Also your chocolate chip cookies are yummy..:)
Thanks for sharing your recipes..

thecoffeesnob said...

"Dough snakes" Haha, too cute.

Mmm this pie looks delish! I could sure use a slice of it on this slow lazy Friday i'm having.

Nora B. said...

Patricia, that's such a wonderful pie that you made for your dad. My dad passed away almost 10 years ago now, but he is always in my memory. He loves choc and desserts but he was more into local desserts that my mom makes (& I don't have much expertise making them), so I never got to make any for him. I like to think of my past conversations with my dad and I smile too :-)

KJ said...

That's such a a sweet story. Dad's are terrific.

Dharm said...

That looks lovely!!
You've been tagged by me at my blog... pls visit to see the rules...!

Patricia Scarpin said...

Orchidea, I'm glad you find it interesting! :)

Joey, I love cooking for them, too, and having them around is so great!

Hannah, I should try the banoffee pie too, it sounds delicious!

Haalo, we sure can! I'd love to try some of your delicious food. :)

Deborah, I love the topping, too. :)

Terry, I'm so glad you like the pie, my friend! And I'm proud of being related to them, too. :)

Lynn, I tried hard to succeed! :)

Susan, he's a dear and also very funny. Although we used to argue a lot when I was single, we love each other very much.

Amy, thank you!

Hey, sweetie, I'm glad you like it!

Manggy, I'd love to see your take on it!

Susan, me too! Caramel is one of my weaknesses. The word alone makes my mouth water. :)

Anita, thank you!

Meeta, have some, sweetie! :)

Pat, this is really rich and decadent. :)

Lydia, and I hope that I can make this pie for my kids when I have them. :)

Hillary, it did feel really good, special. Thank you for your kind words.

Kevin, me too!

Anh, maybe in the future you'll be able to make the bread, you are such a wonderful - and Daring - baker, my dear! :)

Pinkeagle, a huge amount of calories. :)

Sarah, thank you!

Elle, he had a huge slice and then took the rest of the pie home with him! :)

Big Boys, thank you!

Ayseyaman, thank you! I'm glad you like my recipes and also to have you as one of my readers.

Sweetie, I'm already a fan of Fridays, but with something sweet they get even better. :)

Nora, I feel the same way about my mom (she passed away 21 years ago). I wish we could have shared more time together, special moments of our lives. But I try to keep her proud of me wherever she is now. Even though I miss her very, very much, I always smile when I think of her. :)

KJ, I agree!

Dharm, I'll check that out later, tks!

Truffle said...

What a beautiful post! Your father is so lucky to have a fabulous cook like you for a daughter. This looks heavenly. I'd love a forkful right now!

Anonymous said...

omg, Patricia, you are killing me!

Karin W. said...

So, in Brazil you are celebrating Father´s day in August? The Nordic countries: Estonia, Finland, Norway, and Sweden have their Father`s Day set on the second Sunday of November.

I have to save this Banana pie. I´m temptated. My banana Pie Recipe is very good, but it is a really simple recipe.

I put 4 sliced bananas into an ovenproof dish,
crumble 1.5 dl flour, 1.5 dl oatflakes (rolled oats?), 1 dl sugar, och 1 tablespoon potato starch with 125 g butter or margarine,
I sprinkle the crumb mixture over the top of the pie and bake at 225 degrees C for ab. 20 minutes.

It goes with a scoop of ice cream or vanilla custard. What do you call it? A Crumble Pie?

Nic said...

This is wonderful!
Bananas and caramel are a winning combination for sure!

sunita said...

The pie looks gorgeous, Patricia...your dad must have really enjoyed it..and of course, they must have tasted extra special with that dose of love for your dad that went into it...

Mallow said...

I can see why your dad made that request. It looks fabulous!

Anonymous said...

Patricia, I saw your caramel banana pie on Tastespotting and intended to click through, but was reading your comment on my blog and when I clicked through there, ta dah, the pie was yours. Soooooo gorgeous! I can only imagine how wonderful the custard filling goes with the caramel banana topping. I think it was a great departure from the sweetened milk custard, and I'm sure was gobbled up in a heartbeat. I love the elegance and rusticness of the pie.

Warda said...

My dear Patricia, this pie looks delicious. I don't think your father told you so just to be nice. I think it is because it really rocks. My grandma used to make a pie like this with apricot jam and my siblings and I used to call it windows pie because of the pattern. We still call it this way.. We gave funny name to our food.

Julie said...

This looks delicious Patricia, a nice change from the usual banana cream pies we've all come to know. This one almost reminds me of bananas foster done in a pie crust.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Most unusual Patricia and looks like it would be fabulous. Really a beautiful memory and great pie. Pretty nice Dad too I'd say! Well, and a really grand daughter.

Anonymous said...

Great story, Patricia and the pie looks scrumptious too!

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

That is so great Patricia! And I can taste it,just by looking at it! Unfortunately, I can only look on and drool as I am trying to lose weight! I slipped tonight and had a glass of wine, I now want a slice of that pie!

Anonymous said...

Some how I can see why so many others, like myself have made comments here!
D r o o o l.

Pat said...

Patricia I wanted to let you know I have tagged you with the Fantastic Four Meme.

Kelly-Jane said...

Oh my, that looks absolutely wonderful, just my kind of dessert!

Anonymous said...

You're father's not into sweets. Whatever he doesn't want, please send to me.

But his compliment - that it was just like your mother's - that's pretty darn sweet.

This recipe and the previous one look amazing!

Belinda said...

I bet your Dad was thrilled with his Caramel Banana Pie, and even if it didn't end up an exact duplicate of your Mom's, I can tell from the photos that it was a slice of heaven on a looks amazing! :-)

Cynthia said...

Yeah! Dad was happy and enjoyed the pie!

Stella said...

What a gorgeous banana pie, Pat:)
I love banana pies too except that mine's filling is banana & just banana:)
You're dad's lucky to have a daughter like you!

Anonymous said...

I bet your mom was smiling too :) What a delicious pie. Those photos are gorgeous.

Peabody said...

Looks fantastic and I can only assume tastes just as fantastic.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Truffle, thank you!
I used to cook for my father everyday - he lost weight after I got married. :)

Celine, thank you, sweetie! You should know that I feel the same way when I visit your blog. :)

Karin, that recipe sounds so good and quick to put together! Great for unexpected visitors. I think it's a crumble, but I really don't think there's a name for it in Portuguese - we'd call it a pie anyway.

Nicisme, thank you! I agree!

Sunita, I really wanted him to like it. :)

Mallow, thank you!

Bri, that's some nice coincidence! I'm glad you stopped by!
The custard is not too sweet, so it balances well the caramel + banana topping.

Rose, I like that name! It really looks like a window!

Julie, thank you for visiting, sweetie!

Tanna, thank you for your kind words, my dear friend.

Anonymous, thank you!

Holler, thank you for stopping by! I need to lose a few pounds, too, so I was glad when my father asked if he could take the remaining pie home. :)

Dayna, thank you for the visit!

Pat, I'll check that out later, sweetie.

Kelly-Jane, thanks!

Mari, you are back, my dear! I'm glad you liked my posts.

Belinda, thank you for stopping by - you are far too kind! :)

Cynthia, he did!

Valentina, you are so sweet, my friend, thank you!

Kristen, I'm so moved by your comment! Thank you.

Peabody, I'm glad you liked it, my friend.

Jannett said...

This pie looks so good. I am putting it on my list to try.

SteamyKitchen said...

Do you how cool this would be as an ice cream flavor!?!? With crust crumbles as topping???

Anonymous said...

ooohhh...this looks so good. I love anything to do with bananas.

ilingc said...

Patricia, this looks gorgeous, even to a non avid banana fan like me. :)

Everything4sweets said...

I have to try your banana pie,looks so delicious......

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful pie! Cooking under pressure always results in great food. I have to agree with everybody else here, that your dad wasn't just being polite it was a great pie. Daddy's don't lie, now do they?

Lia said...

iam sure ur banana pie is delicious, really its wonderful look!

christine said...

Now that's what separate the bakers from the great bakers! Well done, Patricia. And your dad sounds like a sweet man. :)

Patricia Scarpin said...

Hendria, thank you! Let me know if you try it.

Jaden, that is a fabulous idea!

Cooking Ninja, me too!

Ilingc, I'm glad you like it, even not liking bananas!

Everything 4 sweets, I'd love to hear your opinion about it.

Butta Buns, thank you! I don't think they do! :)

Lia, thank you, sweetie!

Christine, tks for visiting! And for your kind words, too.

rhid said...

This pie looks stunning! What was the texture like? Soft? or chewy?

Patricia Scarpin said...

Hi, Rhid! Tks for the visit!
The filling is kind of silky and and topping is soft.

Naailah said... gonna try this recipe soon bt need to ask u some things before..
firstly do u use US cup or metric cup for ur measurement? i usually measure in grams
and can i omit the lard / vegetable shortening completely? will it be fine
and also about how much time did u blind bake the crust.. abt 10 mins like that??

Patricia Scarpin said...

Naailah, I do use American cups for my measurements, but I prefer to use my scale.
I'm not sure about omitting the shortening, it might affect the texture of your crust (less flaky, probably).
You have to blind bake it until golden, the time will depend on your oven.
Good luck!

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