Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Blooming Banana’s



Wouldn’t it be bliss if our feelings always led us towards true happiness? Well I'm sure they do, when we're on the right track. Yesterday, I was reminded of this, as I listened to an award winning speech, on the meaning of life, from the perspective of a fourteen year old boy. The confidence he spoke with, as he playfully enthused at the meaningless meanderings of adults, was a wee wake up call and very inspiring. It got me thinking, you know those thoughts that keep tick tocking? The ones that seem to pop along like the summer rain, well, these are little reminders that something important needs our full attention. So before the full rays of sunshine may shine, its best to acknowledge the mizzle.


Very rarely are problems resolved overnight, though guess what, somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue, and the tastes that you dream of do really come true, AND guess who creates them? You, beautiful, you. However much mayhem is in our day, the kitchen is a place to make sense of it all, it's known as the heart of the home for good reason. With a little bit of prep and practice, the experience of cooking with flow may knock at your door daily, that lovely feeling of ease will embrace you as smoothly as silk, and in turn wrap your days in the finest lace. That is the joy of cooking good food simply and it’s well within all of our reach. It’s every day that counts, and what we do today makes tomorrow a better one.


On friday I promised a delicious prepare-ahead dessert to craft on a summer’s day, and here it is, surely the tootiest, fruitiest refreshing sweet, I’ve eaten all year. I’m sure you’ll love it too. It has the makings of a classic, with Italian and Irish influences, it is an Alcapone of desserts, with a very happy after taste and not a grimace in sight, to be sure. This ice cream recipe yields enough for two delightful evenings, for four hungry guests. I've added the possibility of a hot - cold combination, where the ice cream meets a melt in the mouth banana and raspberry delight, it's a match I love, I'm sure you will too.



EARL GREY ICE CREAM WITH BANANA RASPBERRY SPICE

MAKES 1 LITRE

Double cream 600 ml
Milk 200 ml
Earl Grey tea 200 ml
Cinnamon stick 1
Fruit sugar 50g
Vanilla pod, 1 slit and seeds scraped
Egg yolks 7
Raspberries 100g


BASIL BANANAS AND RASPBERRIES
Bananas 4
Raspberries 150g
Basil 1 tbsp shredded
Butter 25g
Sweet freedom 1 tbsp

HEAT cream, milk, cinnamon stick and vanilla pod in a large saucepan.
BEAT egg yolks and fruit sugar for 5 minutes.
POUR egg mix into saucepan and whisk everything together for a few minutes.
REMOVE from heat just before mixture begins to bubble and allow to cool.
STIR in raspberries and Earl Grey tea.
POUR into a suitable container and place in the freezer.
STIR gently every thirty minutes to prevent crystallisation, or churn in an ice-cream machine. It will be ready in 2 1/2 hours.


FOR THE BASIL BANANAS & RASPBERRIES 

HEAT butter in a pan and fry bananas with basil and sweet freedom for 2 minutes.
ADD raspberries and fry for a further one minute.
SERVE a scoop of ice cream alongside the warm basil banana and raspberries, for a truly lush pudding.



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