Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Java Pork Roast
Veggie Fries
Roast is such a comfort dish!
It is so easy all you have to do is sear the outside and pop it into the a crockpot or the oven without searing it. The slow cooking browns it beautifully.
When I was working full time I utilized my automatic timer from the oven.  Most people are unaware of this feature, but every oven has one. Check the manual if you can find it!
I would time it to turn on at a certain time and finish cooking at a certain time and dinner was ready when we walked into the house. If you utilize your oven this way you must use frozen foods if you are away all day. The small space does not allow air to defrost the food quickly, so it is food safe. 
If you are afraid to do that, then use your crockpot.
This dish is great anytime of the week, for family or guests, even for a laid back Sunday dinner!

 2tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp instant espresso powder or coffee
1 tsp salt
1tbsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2tsp ground sage
1 tsp peppercorns
2 tsp pepper flakes
1/2 cup white wine
2tsp cornstarch
1cup green olives (opt.)
1  5lb  boneless pork sirloin roast, centre cut,
Rub the dry herbs and spices all over roast and place in a plastic bag with a zip lock, squeeze out all air and marinate min. 1 hr or up to 24 hrs. Remove roast from refrigerator 1 hr before roasting, bringing the meat to room temperature, relaxing the muscle fiber. This can also be frozen and ready to go when needed. If popped in the oven frozen, the cooking time will increase by approx. 1 hr.
Place Roast on rack in roasting pan pour wine over top and add 1-2 cups of water to bottom of pan. Roast at 375F for 2-3 hrs, uncovered until temperature reaches 160F. or until the tip of a knife inserted releases clear juices, turning every 1/2 hr.  If the liquid evaporates too quickly add more wine or water. Let rest for 15min covered with a foil tent, before slicing thinly.
Gravy:  Strain juices through a small sieve, directly into a small saucepot. Add 1tbsp water to cornstarch, stir to mix well and pour  juices into the pan.  The coffee makes this gravy very dark and rich.  Bring to a boil stirring constantly, reduce heat and continue cooking to desired consistency. Add olives and cook 1 more min.
 Crockpot Method: Place 1-2tbsp vegetable oil in a preheated skillet. Place roast in and sear on all sides until golden brown.  Place the roast into the crockpot and turn dial to slow for 6-8 hrs. Proceed with recipe.
Veggie Chips
3 beets, washed and peeled
1 yam, peeled
3 potatoes, peeled, washed
vegetable oil for frying
Slice paper thin in a food processor, mandolin or by hand. Heat a heavy bottomed pot with 1" of oil to 365F, or drop a small piece of potato into oil, if it sizzles immediately, it is ready.
Begin to fry potatoes, then yam and lastly beets so as not to transfer the colour.  Remove with a spider or slotted spoon and drain on paper towels, sprinkle with salt.
Enjoy with Love!


Monday, 25 February 2013

Roasted Garlic & Pepper Soup

I have always wanted to make Pepper Soup but it is not something that is familiar to my heritage.
So with peppers to spare I decided to be bold!
How hard could it be right?
Well it's so easy I don't know why I didn't think of it before.
It is smooth, hearty and great for lunch or as a starter for the middle of the week and impressive enough for weekend guests.
It's only a few ingredients low in fat and calories
You can't beat that!
1 roasted bulb of garlic, squeezed
1 leek, washed and sliced, white part only
2-3 yellow or orange peppers, cut and seeded
3 small potatoes (1 1/2 cup), peeled and quartered
1/3 cup white wine
3 cup broth (homemade would be best if not low sodium)
2 tbsp EVOO
Place bulb of garlic in a preheated 350F oven and bake until it becomes soft, approx. 30 min.  Allow to cool to the touch and squeeze out the pulp.  This can be made days in advance and refrigerated.
Preheat a medium sauce pot, add oil and leeks. Stir to cook and soften the leek.  Add cut peppers, potatoes  and cook until softened, approx another 10-15 min on medium high heat.  Stirring regularly.
Add garlic stir to mix then add wine continue cooking for another 5 min to evaporate alcohol.
Add broth and cook gently for 30min. or until potatoes are easily broken with a fork.
Puree in a blender and pour back into pot to ladle into dishes.  Taste for seasoning
Enjoy with love!
Serves 4

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Baccala a la Pizzaiola
is an integral part of Italian history with strong roots of poverty.
This dry salt cod was a staple in many homes. Once the fish was salted it would sustain the family throughout the cold months. It was particularly special at Christmas time because it was inexpensive, could be prepared many ways and fed a large group of people.
Throughout my studies and fascination with food, I see many cultures and different nationalities use this fish.
I have never wanted to cook this fish, having been tired of having it all my life and after all it is a peasant dish. Even now I don't request it for Christmas because there are so many other seafood's which I enjoy...but
lately I have been feeling the need to learn something from my childhood that brings back memories of comfort.
So with phone in hand I called, who else?
My mom, to ask how to prepare the fish...this is my journey..
Surprisingly it was easier than expected without much fuss...
2-3 lb of dried salt cod

1 cup canned tomato puree

1 cup wine

1 cup water

2 tbsp chopped parsley

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves of garlic

1 tsp each garlic powder, black pepper, thyme

2 tbsp EVOO

just a pinch of salt because the fish will still retain some salt.


Cut  dried cod into 4-6 oz portions and place into a large glass bowl or pot.  Cover with water and let sit on the counter but, away from the sun. Change the water twice daily for 3 days.
*This is easy every time you are near the sink will be a good time to change the water

In a preheated  large size skillet add oil , garlic and onions and sauté until  fragrant and golden approx. 2 minutes. Add the puree, water and wine.  Turn the heat up to hi and bring to a boil.
Reduce immediately to med. low and simmer.  Add  herbs and spices, continue to cook for 20min.  *This can be stored in the refrigerator  up to 3 days in advance.  Taste for seasonings.

Place rehydrated fish in the tomato sauce in a skillet large enough to hold everything and cook on med. low until fork tender approx. 30min. and it flakes when pulled with a fork.

Do not move the fish around, but rather, spoon the sauce over the fish to colour it and infuse its flavour. It will begin to release water flavouring the sauce further.

Spoon into dishes and garnish with parsley. 

Serving Suggestion: grab a nice crusty piece of bread to soak up the tasty fish~

Servies 4-8 people depending on portions

Enjoy with love!


Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Golden Nuggets

When my daughter found this recipe I really didn't believe that there was nothing to bind these cookies like oil or eggs!
But, they are very nutritious if you can ignore the chocolate (I don't)
For those of us looking to have our cake and eat it too! These cookies make it easy, affordable and are guilt FREE
For those of you with dietary restrictions, they are gluten free and vegan!

 Dry ingredients:

1 cup toasted pecans/almonds
1 cup & 1 tablespoon of oat flour (make own in a blender or processor)1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon ground flax seed

Wet ingredients:

1/4 cup pure maple syrup or agave syrup
3 tablespoon brown rice syrup (or honey)
1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract


1/3 cup dried sweetened cranberries
3 tablespoons papita seeds/ chia seeds
3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips dark (omit if you want a vegan recipe)

1) Preheat oven to 350F. Bake and toast pecans for 8-10 mins,cool. When ready, grease or line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

2) In a large bowl whisk together dry ingredients.  In a seperate smaller bowl whisk together wet ingredients.

3) In a mini processor or by hand process the pecans/almonds into small crumbs. Stir into dry ingredients.

4)  Add wet to dry ingredients and stir until combined. Dough will be sticky. Fold in the mix-ins.

5) With lightly wet hands, grab about 2 tablespoons of dough and shape into a ball and place on baking sheet. Repeat until finished.

6) Bake for 10-12 minutes and cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes
Makes approx. 12-16 cookies depending on the size.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Butter Chicken
Comfort food with a twist!
Lasagna is one of my favourite comfort foods and with a little help from
Summer Fresh' new Butter Chicken Sauce
you will never think of dinner as being dull again!
When I make lasagna it is usually for a special occasion as it is a time consuming dish.
But special occasions warrant low and slow.

This Valentine I decide to make something very special, in the middle of the week!
No one has to know it didn't take all day
Indian food has become a big trend and I thought I would fuse my Italian favourites with a sauce that quite honestly, I would be at a loss trying to find the right ingredients and time in trying to make the famous Butter Chicken sauce.
Well with this new sauce from Summer Fresh the guessing is gone
and it's found in this 500ml container.
This Butter Chicken sauce has the subtle flavours of turmeric, the spice of curry and the smooth creaminess of butter and real cream.
This was a big hit with my family!
1 tub Butter Chicken sauce from Summer Fresh
12 chicken thighs, deboned and skin removed  *(time saver: 1/2 cooked roasted chicken, shredded)*
1 tub 400 ml ricotta
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/2 Japanese eggplant, peeled every other 1" strip, cut into 1/4" rounds
1/2 zucchini cut into 1/4" rounds
6 asparagus, washed, woody ends snapped off and cut into 2"-3" pieces
1 onion, diced
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
250 ml mozzarella,  shredded
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 cup broth
salt & pepper to taste
1 375g box oven ready lasagna noodles
Add 2 heaping tbsp of sauce to the chicken and rub into the chicken.  Marinate for 2 hrs or overnight. *(If you do not have time for this step, shred 1/2 of a cooked roasted chicken, no extra sauce is needed at this stage)*
Bake in a 400F preheated oven for  40min.  or until meat can be shredded. This can be made 1 day ahead of time and refrigerated.  Remove chicken from the oven and with two forks shred the meat. Set aside
Mix parsley into ricotta, add a pinch of salt and black pepper, set aside.
In a preheated skillet add 2 tbsp evoo, tip in vegetables and begin to cook on med. heat.
Add a pinch of salt, black pepper and pepper flakes to begin releasing moisture 
from the vegetables, stir regularly. Cook until vegetables begin to soften approx 10 min.  Spoon 2 tbsp Butter Chicken sauce into the pan and stir to mix.  Turn the heat off, they will continue to cook while they cool slightly.  Set aside
While vegetables and meat are cooking fill a large pot 3/4 full of salted water and bring to a boil.  Add 6 lasagna strips into the water. Gently press them down until they are completely submerged.  Move them around with a wooden spoon to prevent sticking.  Cook for 2 min only to soften the noodle, so it is easier to work with.  Repeat the process.  Remove them with a slotted spoon and place in a large bowl filled with water.  This prevents sticking while you prepare for assembly.
I know what you're thinking why parboil noodles that state "oven ready"?  Although you do not have to boil them as long as regular noodles, I find this way, they are not ridged and do not soak up as much liquid as they would if you used them dry.
Drizzle a 9" x 12" casserole dish lightly with oil to prevent sticking.  Add 1 cup of broth or water to the remaining Butter Chicken sauce container and stir to mix. Pour approx. 3 tbsp of diluted sauce over the bottom of the casserole dish and spread to cover. 
Begin to place noodles next to each other covering the bottom of the casserole.  Try not to overlap as the noodle needs moisture and room to expand.
Begin to layer 1/3 of vegetables over noodles, then 1/3 of meat, 1/3 of ricotta , 1/4 of sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella.
Continue repeating 2 more times, topping with one more layer of noodles, remaining sauce and mozzarella.
Bake covered with foil on the middle rack, in a preheated 350F oven for 1 hr. 
Remove foil after 50min.  Using a fork or spatula push the sides of noodles away from the dish and check for moisture.
If it is too dry add  some more water or broth. Cook uncovered for another 10 minutes to brown and crisp top.
Remove from oven and cover with foil, let rest for 15-20 min. to absorb all of the liquid.  This will allow the pasta to rest and set for easier cutting and serving.
Serves: 8
Enjoy with love!

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Thai Curry Chicken

 Thai Curry Chicken

 Well can you imagine my surprise when I opened the new Thai Curry sauce from Summer Fresh and it smelled exactly how I was taught to make Thai Coconut Curry from scratch! 
Even smelling the wonderful aroma of it, I was still a non believer and grabbed a spoon to taste it!
How wonderfully surprising this sauce was?

It has the subtle fiery taste of red panang curry paste, a product that is difficult to find.  The citrus scent of lime leaves and lemongrass wonderfully balanced with the creamy texture I love of coconut milk.
This sauce is ready when you are and has no additives, preservatives, colour and it's low in fat!. This was so simple all I did was rub the sauce onto the chicken and roasted it in the oven...*You can't beat the ease of this sauce and it's great for busy people who want the authentic Thai taste without the fuss of trying to find the ingredients!
10-12 chicken legs with back attached  (or 12 chicken legs or thighs separated)
1 500ml pkg Thai Curry Sauce from Summer
1 tsp chili flakes (opt)
6 lime leaves (or 1 grated lime zest)
1. With a sharp knife remove the skin from the thigh, discard.
Cut the chicken through the cartilage between the leg and thigh, separating it into two pieces.  Quickly rinse any particles off, drain and place in a roasting pan.  Wash your hands and the area well.
2. Using your hands spread the marinade on to the chicken. Wash your hands well.  Sprinkle chili flakes and lime leaves or zest around the chicken and roast in a 375F preheated oven, turning every 1/2 hr. to baste in the sauce. Cook for approximately 80 min or until meat easily tears from the bone and is golden brown.

The juices will release creating a fragrant, creamy sauce with a bit of a kick! There will be enough sauce to pour over rice or vegetables. 

Crock pot: Brown the prepared chicken in a skillet.  Follow the same instructions from #2  and place in a crock pot on low for 6-8hrs or high for 4 hrs depending on your schedule. This will create more liquid as the crock pot simmers slowly covered.
Serving Suggestion: Serve over cooked rice

Serves 6-8
*If you are really in a hurry, brown chicken breasts and pour sauce over and cook until there are no pink juices *
Enjoy with love!

Friday, 15 February 2013

Spicy Thai Cauliflower Soup
 I love soup in the Winter!

It is comforting and makes me feel warm all over.

I find that especially good for this time of the year as we are in cold and flu season.

When they are smooth and creamy I feel like I am at top restaurant starting an expensive meal!

This soup is silky and rich without any cream.

The addition of coconut milk lends a creamy richness without the fat calories and it is dairy free making this a good addition to a vegetarian or vegan pantry.
Usually when I prepare soup as a starter, I get nothing but complaints in my home!
Not soup again, is the usual response or... what else is there?
It's my way of sneaking in more veggies.
I had no problem convincing my teens to try this because it's aromas filled the house with an exotic scent, so it intrigued them as soon as they stepped into the house!
This soup has vegetables that you can easily find any time of the year and has only 6 ingredients.  With this new Thai Curry sauce from Summer Fresh a busy mom can have this ready in 30 minutes while enjoying a completely unique meal. 
The panang red curry paste adds an unexpected punch with just enough heat. It has an aromatic mixture of lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal and  spicy chilies to warm you right down to your toes.

Most of these ingredients are hard to find in the best of stores and now with this one sauce you don't have to look further or experiment. You get just the right measurements without fuss.
This new Thai Curry sauce from Summer Fresh has all of the flavours with authentic Thai tastes and it's ready when you are.

Thai Curry sauce can spice up your weekday meal in a pinch and will add pizazz to any weekend dinner parties!
It definitely got an A+ from my bunch
There are no preservatives, colours or artificial flavours!
1 head of cauliflower
1 leek, washed chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
750 ml. chicken broth or vegetable broth (homemade or low sodium)
2 tbsp evoo
1/4 cup Thai Curry Summer Fresh Sauce (if you want it spicy add more)
1-2 tbsp chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)
Preheat oil in a large sauce pot.  Add leeks and garlic, sauté for 3-5 min until softened.
Add cauliflower, stirring to coat with oil  and cook for 5 min to begin to caramelize and soften.
Add broth and Summer Fresh sauce.  Stir to mix all of the ingredients. You will get a soft enticing orange colour. Bring to a boil and then turn down the heat to medium. Cook for 30min or until cauliflower is fork tender.
Using a hand blender puree in the pot or carefully ladle the vegetables into a food processor/blender container and puree.
*Be careful if pureeing in a blender. Do not fill to the top or the expanding liquid may pop the lid*
Garnish with cilantro
Serves 4-6

Enjoy with love!

Woodland Vegetable Medley
I love making a mixture of vegetables in one dish
It's colourful, tasty and looks plentiful on a serving platter.
Friends and family can chose the vegetables they prefer!
My dish looks inviting with the addition of Summer Fresh
3 Peppercorn Sauce and it's easy to make any day of the week.
It accentuates the flavour of the mushrooms, leeks and green beans with it's dark creamy texture from the beef broth, with just a hint of heat!
1 leek, washed well & sliced into 1/8" rounds
1 red onion, diced
2 cup mushroom button & oyster (or any type), sliced
1- 2 lb  green beans, washed and ends snipped
2 tbsp parsley
1/4 tsp each thyme & salt
1/2 container 3 Peppercorn Summer Fresh Sauce
2 tbsp EVOO, corn oil or any vegetable oil
Fill a large skillet or wok with 1" of water. Bring to a boil and immediately add the green beans.
Cover and bring to a boil.  Using tongs to bring the bottom beans up to the top after a few minutes of boiling. Cook for 5 minutes.
Drain and shock in a bowl of ice water. 
Dry the same skillet and place on medium high heat to preheat.  Add the oil and tip in the leek, onion, and mushrooms.  Using a wooden spoon, regularly stir to cook as mushrooms and onions release liquids, cooking for 5-8 min.  Add herbs and salt. 
Oyster Mushrooms
Spoon peppercorn sauce over all of the vegetables, stir to melt and coat vegetables.
Add green beans 2 min.  before serving to retain the green colour and cook all vegetables for another 2-4 min until green beans are cooked but still have a bite.
Taste for seasoning
Enjoy with love!
Serves:  6

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

3 Peppercorn Stew with Smashed Garlic Potatoes
I love beef stews!
They are fast and easy.
A few preparations and you have Sunday or any night dinner
I used a new sauce from Summer Fresh products to help with this dinner
3 Peppercorn Sauce definitely delivers with the pepper flavours. It has black, green and pink peppercorns in it. It produces a thick gravy with it's addition of cream and beef stock.
While I was eating this stew I would get a nice crunch of peppercorn in my mouth!
It is not hot or overly spicy but, I really love the extra gravy I had to use on my garlic infused mashed potatoes.

3 lb cubed, stewing beef ( IE: short rib, chuck, blade)

1/2 cup chopped fennel or celery

1 lg. carrot, peeled and cut into large chunks

1 med. onion, diced

1 cup sliced button mushrooms

1 green or red pepper, seeded and cut into large chunks

1 cup red wine

salt & pepper to taste

1  tsp  dried oregano

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1/2 container of 3 Peppercorn Summer Fresh Sauce

vegetable oil

In a preheated med. size skillet brown the meat in 2 tbsp. oil until all sides are golden brown and caramelized. Place pieces in a Crock pot or Dutch oven. 

Add another 2tbsp of oil if needed to the pan and sauté all of the vegetables and garlic for 5 min until slightly softened, season to taste lightly.

Add vegetables to the pot.  Pour wine into the pan and deglaze, swirling the mixture to loosen any sticky pieces left on the bottom.  Tip this mixture over the meat and vegetables. Sprinkle the herbs over top and place on lid. 

Cook in a preheated 325F oven for 3 hrs or in a Crockpot on high for 4 hrs or low for 6-8hrs. Crockpot time depends on your schedule

I hour before stew is ready, tip in the Peppercorn sauce and stir into the stew. Cover and continue cooking.  This will thicken, giving you a creamy, tasty gravy.

 Smashed Garlic Potatoes


3 lb peeled, quartered potatoes

1 1/2 cup milk

3 tbsp butter

1 tsp salt or to taste

4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced


In a pot large, enough to hold the potatoes, add enough water to barely cover. Bring to a boil on high heat.  Immediately turn the heat to medium, (#5-6} and continue cooking until a fork easily pierces the potato.

Drain in a colander and set aside.

Meanwhile place milk , butter and garlic into the pot and back onto the burner on med. heat.  Cook for 5 min to soften the garlic.  This infuses the potatoes with a delicate garlic flavour.

Gently tip potatoes back into the pot.  Using a potato masher smash the potatoes, leaving some chunks for texture. Taste for seasonings and texture.  Be adventurous, add more butter or milk if you'd like. 

*If you are watching your calories substitute a non-dairy milk or broth!*

Scoop  a portion of mashed potato onto a plate and top with stew. 

Enjoy with love

Serves 4-6


Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Banana Bread
I love banana bread, it is a dessert with lots of fruit, fiber and it's aromas fill the house with a wonderful smell of cinnamon and spice!
I rarely have over ripe bananas in the house since everyone eats them daily. When I am grocery shopping I always look for loose bananas that are packed and placed in the "quick sale" section. Surprisingly these bananas are perfect inside but the skin is bruised and people don't want the bruised ones...well
these are the ones I look for. They are reduced in price and if my family doesn't eat them right away I can make a few banana cakes and freeze them for later.
This recipe from the Everything Guide to GF Living from
Jeanine Friesen
is a light fluffy moist cake!
Not one of my kids guessed that it was Gluten Free,
a good reason for them not to try it because teenagers are just finicky eaters!
This was gobbled up in 2 days!
But I managed to take a great picture of it! I also baked it in a traditional loaf pan increasing the cooking time to 80min. and added a struesel topping for decoration. I try not to use frosting as it is more caloric.
For those of you who want frosting you can use any of her delicious choices as well as using your favourite!
I would recommend the pan in the instructions, just to reduce the baking time.

This moist cake stays fresh for days on the counter. Although it doesn't require a frosting to be enjoyed, it is also tasty topped with sweetened whipped cream, or chocolate frosting

½ cup brown rice flour

1 cup sorghum flour

¾ cup gluten-free oat flour

¼ cup tapioca starch

1 teaspoon xanthan gum

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (I used 2 tsp + 1/2 tsp all spice because I love spice)

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

¾ cup brown sugar

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large overripe bananas, mashed (about 2 cups total)

2/3cup sour cream

½ cup chopped walnuts (omit for nut free cake)

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, and lightly grease one 9"

13" pan. Set aside.

2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the brown rice

flour, sorghum flour, oat flour, tapioca starch, xanthan

gum, baking soda, baking powder, espresso powder,

ground cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

3. In a separate large mixing bowl, or the bowl of a stand

mixer, beat the softened butter with the granulated and

brown sugar until light and fluffy.

4. In another bowl, stir to combine the eggs, vanilla,

mashed bananas, and sour cream.

5. Pour the banana mixture into the butter/sugar mixture,

and beat until well blended.

6. With the mixer running on medium-low speed, add the

dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Stir to combine.

Add the walnuts and stir again to incorporate them.

7. Pour cake batter into prepared pan, leveling the top

with a rubber spatula. Bake in preheated oven for

45–50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the

middle comes out clean. The cake will also release

from the edge of the pan, and the top may begin to

crack slightly.

8. Remove from oven and cool completely before serving.
Struesel Topping:
6 tbsp oats
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp brown rice flour
1 tbsp margaring or butter
1/2 banana sliced for decoration on top
In a small bowl mix all dry ingredients together.  Using your fingers mash the shortening into the dry ingridients.  The mixture should look like pea sized pieces.
Using a tablespoon, sprinkle the mixture over the batter and place one slice at a time of banana on top of the cake, slightly press into batter.
*Loaf Pan: bake in a 350F for 80 min. Do not use glass or it will brown too deeply.*
No Oats?
No problem. If you cannot find or tolerate

oat flour, feel free to substitute it with millet

Enjoy with love!


Banana Cream Tart

Banana Cream Tart 
I love the creaminess of Banana Cream Tart.
Mine is a little unconventional because instead of a vanilla custard, I like to actually puree the bananas inside the custard.
This gives me specks of fresh banana taste exploding in my mouth!
You do have to eat this within a few hours of making this tart if you have guests coming to have a slice, because banana goes dark when it is in the refrigerator.
If there are any leftovers no one has ever complained that the colour isn't pretty..the taste is still fantastic!
Looks aren't everything!
Sometimes you just have to throw caution to the wind and grab a

2 cups milk or almond milk

2 tbsp sugar (or to taste)

2 eggs

3 bananas, mashed well

1 tsp flour

2 tsp cornstarch

pinch salt

1 tsp unflavoured gelatin powder


2 cups cookie crumbs (I used Almond Shortbread from Voortmans)

3 tbsp shortening

3 oz. chocolate, melted

10-12 amaretti cookies, crushed (or more Almond Shortbread)*


In a med. sized pot pour in all ingredients except gelatin and whisk vigorously.  Place on med. high heat and bring to almost a boil.  Reduce heat so the mixture does not boil over.  Continuously whisk so mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pot and burn.  Cook until mixture is thickened approx. 10min. *If you did not whisk and their are too many lumps, puree with a hand mixer*

Bloom gelatin powder in a 1 tbsp of water.  Microwave for 30 seconds on high. Stir to liquefy, cool slightly. 

Mix into banana mixture.  Allow to cool at room temperature for 30-45 min.  Refrigerate for 1 hr. (This cannot be made 1 day in advance as the bananas turn brown when refrigerated).

In a med. sized bowl mix crumbs with shortening.  Press into a 4"x 12"x 2" false bottom tart pan.  (See picture).  Press tightly up the sides using your fingers to tamp down the edge.  This builds the sides to prevent breakage when removed from tart pan.
Bake in a 350 preheated oven for 10min until lightly golden.

Cool to room temp or speed the process up in the refrigerator
Pour the melted chocolate onto the cooled crumbs. Spread with a spatula. *When chocolate hardens it prevents the filling to soak through to the crumbs, giving you a sturdy shell* Harden in the refridgerator for 15min.

Pour the cooled banana filling mixture over the crust , spread to the outer corners.  Top with whipped topping, refrigerate. 

When ready to serve, sprinkle crushed *amaretti cookies on top.

*Amaretti cookies are made from ground almonds, sugar and egg whites and found in the international section of your grocery store.*


Enjoy with love!