Here is my version of a banana split that I have served a few times over the last few months.  Each time I have altered the recipe just slightly.  If you are not a banana fan then you will probably not like this dessert very much since it has banana cake (bread), banana cinnamon ice cream, and caramelized bananas.  With that being said I've had a few people that have eaten this dish and said to me that they don't really like bananas but loved this dessert.  This really isn't a complicated dessert and a lot of the components can be done ahead of time which is always good.  This dessert is simply taking the flavors of a banana split whipped cream, bananas, chocolate, caramel, and ice cream and presenting it in a different way.  Food has been done, part of a chef's job is to try and present things in a different way but still tap into those childhood memories.  This dessert is nothing more than that.   This is also a good way to get rid of some bananas that have over-ripened too much.  We normally stick our bananas that go brown in the freezer.  When we accumulate too many I make ice cream, or banana bread or smoothies.   Here's the recipe I hope you enjoy!

Banana Cinnamon Ice cream

4 egg yolks

3/4 cup of sugar

1 1/2 cup of milk

1 1/2 cup of cream

1 1/2 tsp of cinnamon

3-4 ripened frozen bananas thawed

 

Banana bread (cake)

3 1/4 cup flour

1 tsp of nutmeg

1 tsp of cinnamon

1/4 tsp of allspice

1 tsp of salt

2 tsp of baking soda

2 3/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup milk

1 cup of vegetable oil

2 tsp of vanilla

5-6 frozen thawed bananas 

 

Dulce de leche Sauce

1 can of dulce de leche

2 pints of heavy cream

 

Chocolate mousse

125 g of semi sweet chocolate chips

½ cup of cream

½ tsp of gelatin powder

2 tsp of water

 

Candied Salted Peanuts

1 lbs of peanuts

1 cups of powdered sugar

3 tbsp of water

1 1/2 tsp salt

 

Caramelized bananas

3 ripe bananas parisienne balls

Sugar

torch to caramelize 

 

Whipped cream

1 pint of cream

1/4 cup of powder sugar

1 tsp of vanilla

 

For the Ice Cream

Place the egg yolks in a stand mixer and turn on medium speed.  Slowly pour in your sugar.  Whip for about 4 minutes until light and fluffy. Meanwhile for the ice cream base start by adding all the milk and cream. Bring the mixture slowly to a boil and turn off.  With a ladle, temper your eggs by ladling a little of the milk mixture into the eggs, until you have about half of your milk mixture mixed in the eggs. Then take the mixing bowl with the egg mixture and pour back into the pot of milk mixture using a spatula to scrape the sides.  Turn the heat back on low and stir for about 5 minutes and then turn off.  You can let the mixture cool in the refrigerator if you have the time, or place in a bowl inside a ice bath to cool down faster.  Once the mixture is cool you can add the bananas with a hand blender.  Then place in the refrigerator if you wish or place in your ice cream maker until done according to your ice cream maker.  Then store in a container and place in the freezer.

For the chocolate mousse,

Bloom gelatin and water together in a small glass bowl.  Fill a small pot with water and bring to a simmer.  In a glass or stainless bowl add your chocolate.  Place the bowl over the pot to melt the chocolate making sure the water doesn't touch the bowl. Once melted take off the heat.  Place the gelatin bowl and float on top of the water to melt the gelatin and water together.  Cool slightly.  Meanwhile whip your cream to medium peaks.  Pour gelatin into the cream and whip to stiff peaks. Add the cooled melted chocolate.  Then fold the whipped cream into the chocolate being careful not to over work it.  Place into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip.  Take half moon silicon molds and fill with the mousse, smoothing out the tops with an offset spatula.   Place the molds in the freezer for at least an hour.  Then un-mold the ones your going use 10 minutes before you are going to serve them and place them on a plate in the refrigerator.  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

For the Banana cake

Take the dry ingredients and mix together in a large bowl.  Then take milk, vanilla, eggs, oil, and mix together well with a whisk.  Then add your thawed bananas to the wet ingredients mashing the bananas with the whisk.  ( I like to leave little chunks of bananas instead of a smooth puree) Then mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.  Mix until just incorporated.  Then place the batter onto a sprayed half sheet pan or one lined with parchment paper and spread evenly.  Cook for 20 minutes in the oven until a toothpick comes out clean.  Set aside to cool.

For the whipped cream

Place heavy cream in a stand mixer and turn on medium high.  When the cream starts to thicken slightly add the powdered sugar and vanilla.  Whip until stiff peaks.  Place the whipped cream in a pastry bag with a plain tip or no tip at all if you wish.  Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.  

For the candied salted peanuts

Place water and powdered sugar in a bowl and mix well with a whisk.  Then fold in your peanuts and salt mixing well.  Place the peanuts on a sheet pan line with a silpat.  Place the pan in the oven set at 375 and cook for about 15-18 minutes.  Stirring the nuts every 5 minutes  with a wooden spoon so they roast evenly.  Then take out and cool.  Once cooled you can break up into clusters.

For the bananas,

Take a large melon baller and make round balls of bananas scooping them out onto a sheet pan.  Then sprinkle liberally with sugar on the tops of the bananas.  With a torch caramelize the sugar on top of the bananas.  Set aside 

For the dulce de leche sauce. 

Simply add cream and dulce de leche to a pot.  Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.  Turn off and keep warm.

To finish the dish add a spoonful of the dulce de leche sauce to the plate.  Then take one chocolate mousse and garnish with a little cocoa nibs placing in the middle of the sauce.  Pipe a little whipped cream on the tops of two pieces of banana cake.  Then place the cake on each side of the chocolate mousse.  Pipe one more bit of cream next to one of the cakes.  Add 3 pieces of banana to the plate placing all on top of each of the cream.  Finish with a scoop of banana ice cream topped with salted peanuts.  Serve and enjoy! 

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