Look. FIRE! I bet if you print that picture and then cut each image out, you could make a flip-book and watch the flames flicker.
So this entry is a little late in posted and for that I appologize. This fantastcally flaming dessert was the theatrical finish to a little Valentine's Day dinner party Mark and I took part in. Our friends Mike and Jodie invited us, along with Annie and Pierson and Annie's co-worker Tricia (who's husband was out of town) to come over for a casual evening of New Orleans style food. Annie made a vat of hurricanes, and took care of the salad - iceberg wedges with bacon and blue cheese dressing. Mike and Pierson took a trek to Santa Monica Fish Market for some snapper, which Jodie and Pierson blackened and served along with jamabalaya. And then I was in charge of dessert. This recipe comes from Tyler Florence, alothough it's also very similar to one Martha Stewart had in, I believe, the Februrary 2004 issue of her magazine.
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
6 ripe bananas, peeled, sliced lengthwise and halved
1/4 cup banana liqueur
1/2 cup dark rum
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pint vanilla ice cream
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the brown sugar and stir until the sugar completely dissolves, about 2 minutes.
Lay the bananas in the pan and cook on both sides until they become slightly soft and begin to brown, about 3 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the banana liqueur and then the rum and cinnamon. Tip the pan slightly and carefully ignite the alcohol with a long kitchen match or kitchen lighter to flambe. Put the pan back on the heat and shake it back and forth basting the bananas, until the flame dies out.
Divide the ice cream among dessert bowls. Gently lift the bananas from the pan and place 2 pieces on the ice cream. Spoon the sauce over the ice cream and serve immediately.
This dessert is so good and best of all it's easy. It takes no time at all and it's just so festive and fun. Best of all, it tastes amazing. The brown sugar caramelizes the bananas beautifully, which end up nicely soft, rather than mushy. It's a pleasing contrast in temperatures too, with the warm bananas melting the cool ice cream. Some of us at the gathering were talking and thought that maybe it could be better served on top of a slice of pound cake, to soak up the sauce and melting ice cream. I supposed I'll just have to make it again and test out our little theroy.