Banoffee Pie Madness

 

One of the best things of being a food photographer is the access to new tastes, flavors and recipes. Because 100% of what we do at our studio is actually edible, you’ll find me on set most days asking this series of questions to Adam, my food stylist partner:

 

a)     I’ve got the shot. Can you review it and tell me if there’s anything you’d like to change?

b)    Ok, fantastic. Looks great. We’re done. Can I eat this?

 

I can’t really remember a day where I haven’t dug into a casserole or broken off a piece of bread or stolen a cookie. I often tell myself that it’s part of my job and that I actually should know what things taste like. When I photograph a cookbook it’s inevitable that people will ask me what the process was like and if there was a favorite recipe. Why shouldn’t I be prepared?

(sidenote: yes, I actually did taste every single recipe made from Jenny’s upcoming book and let’s just say you should be as excited as I am for it come out)

Recently a rather unfamiliar dessert landed on my shooting surface. Ok, let me back up. Unusual for me. But then again I’m not a Sweets kinda guy, generally. But this item, Banoffee Pie, is an English favorite that we were shooting for Cooking Channel and it really caught my attention.

Let’s see…bananas, check. Cookies, check. Coffee, check. Condensed milk made into caramel? Double check. I knew I was gonna try this. And something told me I was gonna like it.

Holy crap.

How have I gone 41 years without ever taking a bite of this? Adam’s assistants were particularly jazzed, knowing how fun and tasty Banoffee Pie is. But me? I was a Banoffee Virgin, new to the combination of tastes and are all individually my favorites.

Was it over the top? Yes. Was it super sweet? Indeed. Do I crave it all the time now? Hell to the yes.

I danced around the studio with whipped cream on my face and kept saying “Imagine Banoffee This! Imagine Banoffee That!” I think I was reprimanded slightly by my team, told to re-focus and reminded that we had plenty of more recipes to shoot. Our day was far from over.

When I got home I furiously jotted down ideas and notes, then asked my dear sweet partner if we could one day return to the studio, play around with banoffee ingredients, photograph them, them shamelessly eat them until we collapsed.

He obliged.

So what did I discover? Banoffee ingredients make me happy. They work well introduced into a variety of formats. And that I will probably never get tired of bananas + caramel + cookies/crust + whipped cream + coffee.  For reals, y’all.

Add this combination to the top of a cupcake and what do you have? Insanity.  Any cupcake will do but you’ll probably want to introduce a flavor that compliments a traditional banoffee pie. Banana cupcakes, vanilla or espresso could totally work. Top them with chocolate frosting, sprinkle graham cracker crumbs on top, a dollop of whipped cream, a banana coin and a small graham cracker. Drizzle with dulce de leche. Stuff into your face.

 

 

Could graham cracker crumbs, dulce de leche, cream, chocolate and bananas make a delicious parfait? Absolutely. It’s rich, I’m telling you, so you might want to add a scoop of vanilla ice cream :)

 

Yes, I am a stickler for that panino/panini format, I can’t help it. At any rate, spreading banoffee ingredients on bread, tucking some banana slices in there and then pressing on a grill or panini press gives you a sweet, breakfasty type sandwich (although the sensible me shudders at the thought of eating something like this for breakfast). Still, it’s fun, delicious, and even better if you top it with a dollop of whipped cream.

Sigh. Oh, banoffee milkshake, you were my favorite. For some reason all these things in a blender with ice cream just sing. You could get a lil fancy and top with chipped cream, chocolate shaving and a drizzle of caramel if you wanted. Again, vanilla ice cream is a good start, but could you imagine butter pecan or any type of banana ice cream? I think I need to stop dreaming up ways to use these ingredients. I will no longer fit into my pants.

I happen to love Maggie’s Banoffee Pie that she made for us during our Palm Springs retreat when I told her about my new found love for the stuff. If you’re looking for her delicious recipe you can find it here.



Comments

  1. says

    Oh wow, that looks insanely good. How could anyone object to a super sweet dessert, made with coffee, cookies, condensed milk, graham cracker crumbs…this sounds heavenly. Must make.

    And love the pics…they are so cute and fun :)

  2. Marylouise says

    I thoroughly enjoyed your post!!! I remember my first time eating Banoffee after marrying an Irishman! It was in a little cafe in Belfast and after the first bite I wondered why something like that hadn’t made it to the US. A few months later, being young and inexperienced in the kitchen, I boiled the milk for 4 hours just like I was told. I didn’t let them cool and I spent the next 4 hours cleaning caramel from kitchen ceiling to floor and everything in between!

  3. Marylouise says

    I thoroughly enjoyed your post!!! I remember my first time eating Banoffee after marrying an Irishman! It was in a little cafe in Belfast and after the first bite I wondered why something like that hadn’t made it to the US. A few months later, being young and inexperienced in the kitchen, I boiled the canned milk for 4 hours just like I was told. I didn’t let the tins cool and I spent the next 4 hours cleaning caramel from kitchen ceiling to floor and everything in between!

  4. Mark says

    Matt I loved this post, so creative and fun! I need to create a “diabetic friendly ” version of this Banoffee treat you speak of though… do Graham Crackers = Oreo’s?

  5. says

    This is why I love this post: 1. Classic Matt Awesomeness, i.e. taking an idea and going to town with it. Would this work in a tortilla? 2. There are two of each. Bannoffee Madness is no time to go splitsies on dessert. 3. Is that whole wheat bread in the panini? Bannoffee Health Food! That means you can have two.

  6. says

    Just last week I had my first bannofee pie at about 14.00h in the afternoon at 15.00h I was sitting on the computer searching for recipes. This stuff is seriously good!

  7. MarieOBrien says

    Hi Matt,
    I was recently introduced to your blog via a colleague and I am so excited to have found you! I can totally understand your excitement for everything banoffee – I lived in the UK for almost 5 years and found myself exceptionally giddy about things like this as well. They definitely know how to do desserts over there…and with Christmas coming, I would selfishly like to suggest that you look into making some Sticky Toffee Pudding and then sharing photos and recipes with us :-) It’s amazing…I used to buy them pre-made from Marks and Spencers and bring them home to California with me and I think my whole family misses them! And your photos by the way are to die for…I wish this was scratch and sniff!

  8. says

    I love every single ingredient in this pie – it’s perfect. Now I know what to do with the extra bag of oreo cookies.

  9. Jules says

    Hilarity! You are totally channeling Elvis with that Banoffee Pie Panino. Too cute. Love your blog.

  10. Sarah says

    I was born and bred in Scotland but now live in America. Banoffee pie is one of the foods I miss the most!

    It’s also referenced in Love, Actually if anyone has seen it!

  11. says

    I had this years ago at a restaurant, and haven’t thought of it till I stumbled across this. Now I can try to make it myself. You have a very dangerous job, lol!

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