Steve’s Birthday Banoffee Pie

Yield: 8 servings Active time: 1 hour 15 minutes Total time: 8 hours February 20, 2009

Our Scottish friend Steve spent his 30th birthday in Austin with us, and we celebrated with this banoffee pie. It has a lot of steps, from making caramel, baking the hazelnut crust, slicing bananas, and making whipped cream, but it is decadent and worthy of a special celebration.

Recipe for hazelnut tart crust from Food & Wine.

Ingredients

  • Double batch of caramel
  • 1/4 cup hazelnuts
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 to 3 bananas
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sifted powdered sugar
  • 1 or 2 1.4-oz. English toffee-flavored candy bars, crushed

Directions

Prepare the caramel.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the hazelnuts in a pie plate and toast for 12 minutes, or until fragrant and blistered. Rub the nuts in a kitchen towel to remove the skins. Finely grind the nuts in a food processor.

Wipe out the processor. Add the butter and sugar and process until fluffy. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and process until just blended. Add the flour, salt and the ground hazelnuts and pulse until a crumbly dough forms.

Scrape the dough into a large disk, then press the dough into a 9-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Line the dough with plastic wrap and press evenly into the pan. Freeze until firm, about 10 minutes.

Discard the plastic and press a piece of well-buttered foil directly onto the dough. Fill the foil with pie weights or dried beans and bake for 30 minutes, or until the shell is golden around the edge. Remove the foil and weights and bake for 15 minutes longer, or until golden all over. Let cool on a wire rack.

Cut bananas into 1/8-inch slices, and place on crust. Spread caramel over bananas. Cool at least 30 minutes.

Beat whipping cream at medium speed with an electric mixer until foamy; gradually add powdered sugar, beating until soft peaks form. Spread over caramel layer. Sprinkle with crushed candy. Chill at least 3 hours.

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