Ah, Bananas Foster, that elegant table-side dessert. Invented in 1951 in Brennan’s Restaurant in New Orleans, it was created on the spot to impress Richard Foster, the then Crime Commission chairman. Apparently, he arrived, and the kitchen had to unexpectedly put together a dessert. They had bananas on hand, so Bananas Foster was born. It soon became one of the restaurant’s most popular creations and is a must-try dish for any visitor to New Orleans. In case you can’t make it to the Big Easy, don’t worry.
It is incredibly simple to make at home. This recipe makes quite a bit of extra sauce because…well, because it is so good. Make sure each person gets plenty.
To flame or not to flame. Traditionally, this dish is flamed table-side for an extra dramatic presentation. It is not necessary to do, however. The alcohol cooks off just fine right there on the stove top. Of course, if you would like to impress your guests and flame it, you can. Just ignite the rum right after you add it to the sauce. It should burn off after 30 seconds. Be sure to have a lid ready in case you need to extinguish the flames.
The key to making sure your Bananas Foster doesn’t turn out grainy is to make sure the sugar has time to melt into the butter. Do not rush it. Possible additions: You could add roasted pecans for another level of delicious.
In a large skillet, melt the butter on low heat. Whisk in the brown sugar and cinnamon. Cook for at least 5 minutes while stirring, making sure the sugar melts completely into the butter.
Stir in the banana liqueur.
Cook for 2 minutes or just until they begin to brown slightly.
Let everything cook for another few minutes while spooning the sauce over the bananas and then remove from the heat.
Serve over ice cream immediately.
Set out four plates. Put a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream on each plate. Arrange four quarters of banana on each plate and drown them in that decadent sauce. Serve immediately.
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