Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Mini Banoffee Pies

Today was first recipe book challenge I cooked p83 Mini Banoffee Pies...

It was a recipe that I was interested in when first looking through the book so I was quite pleased that we picked this page at random. I'm not going to copy the recipe here as I'm sure there would be copyright issues so I'm just going to mention how I found it and when I altered the recipe. 

As this was a last minute idea we didn't have the exact ingredients but pretty close. This time we decided to go with our low fat spread rather than butter and also we used granulated sugar rather than brown sugar. I knew the lack of brown sugar would alter the colour of the toffee but not the taste so decided it would be fine. There'll be a picture later to show you the difference. 

The recipe took me around 1 and a half hours, one thing that slightly annoyed me about the recipe book is that it doesn't mention how long things should take and at times I found the timings rather vague. I didn't leave for an hour before serving so they're not completely at their best yet but close. 

The biscuit base was the first part of the recipe and this was very easy to make, just whiz the biscuits up and add melted butter. I was afraid that maybe my biscuits were too moist but it meant that it was easy to push into place. I didn't really make cases out of these, more thin slabs, I would have preferred a little more mixture to spread across for next time. Something I've never had before for a biscuit base is to put these in the oven for 5 minutes, I'm not sure exactly why this was but maybe it dries it out a little or something? To be honest my husband took it out the oven and put them in the fridge so I didn't see what they looked like at this stage. Once cooked they are left until chilled. 

The biscuit base ready to go into the oven
The next step is to make the toffee sauce, this is a simple case of melting butter and sugar and cream together for a few minutes. I didn't read the recipe properly and accidentally added the cream before the butter and sugar had melted but it didn't seem to do any harm. This again was very simple but I wasn't really sure how long I was supposed to simmer the mixture for. The recipe said a few minutes and the sugar should be dissolved but I couldn't really tell, so I set a timer for 3 minutes and hoped that would be ok. I don't have a particularly good track record with toffee. 

Finally was the banana mousse for the topping, this again was so simple. The bananas, as purchased today, weren't as ripe as I would like, this meant that when mashing they were a little bitty but adds a little texture. You then add icing sugar to that. Whip up the cream and fold it all together. 

All the components ready to go
Showing the colour of the toffee... certainly not the rich colour of the book but tastes good

The final stage is to put it all together, a case with a dollop of toffee and a dollop of mousse topped with a grating of chocolate. I didn't have a piping bag so couldn't pipe the mousse as the recipe states but again I didn't think it would take anything away from it.

The toffee is added to the base.. does come over the base a little herer
The product description states that "These are lovely chewy, chocolately, banana toffee delights, really light and perfect for afternoon tea. The mousse works so well, it's almost a lighter play on the original, a banana lover's delight"

The finished article... showing all three layers.. modelled by my husband!! 
The finished article.. the outside

Our verdict is that the final product was very tasty, the mousse was really light and is better than just having double cream. I certainly feel this was a better alternative. However, I feel like there wasn't enough biscuit base and it wasn't hard enough, I would have preferred a drier base and something a bit more substantial. We would also say that it's not really chocolatey as the small shavings on top don't really add a huge about of flavour.

Overall my rating for the Mini Banoffee pies is 7/10 and my husband's is 6/10 so a total of 13/20.