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Caramel, Bananas, Nut Treats


jlwquilter
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These are for my husband. I've made in the past a kind of Wagon Wheel dessert treat. I take a slice of banana, stick a toothpick in it, wrap a flattened Kraft caramel around it, dip it in melted chocolate, and them roll/sprinkle with fine chopped peanuts.

He loves them. They are a mess to make and don't come together easily at all.

The banana won't stay on the toothpick. I've tried them "raw". frozen, and semi-frozen to no avail.

The caramel won't stick to the banana. I've prgressed to sticking the caramel to the toothpick and sorta enclosing the banana inside. The caramel flattens ok but is sticky and odd shaped and hard to work with. One piece of caramel rarely is enough to enclose a slice so I have to get 2 pieces to stick. It's a nightmare.

The chocolate dips ok but lots of times the whole mess falls into the chocolate. The peanuts stick fine.

So... I was thinking there's got to be a better way! I was thinking what if I make caramel and pour it into a pan... either over a layer of bananas or pour it and then place the bananas on top. Let it set up. Cut into shapes around the banana slices, stick in a toothpick, and dip in chocolate/nuts.

BUT... would the bananas and caramel stick together this way?? From my prior attemps with the wheels it seems that it's the banana juice that oozes out and prevent the caramel from sticking to the slice. Should I dust the slices with confectioner's sigar and/or cornstrch first?? Are there other tricks to make them stick together??

All help is appreciated!

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These are for my husband. I've made in the past a kind of Wagon Wheel dessert treat. I take a slice of banana, stick a toothpick in it, wrap a flattened Kraft caramel around it, dip it in melted chocolate, and them roll/sprinkle with fine chopped peanuts.

He loves them. They are a mess to make and don't come together easily at all.

The banana won't stay on the toothpick. I've tried them "raw". frozen, and semi-frozen to no avail.

The caramel won't stick to the banana. I've prgressed to sticking the caramel to the toothpick and sorta enclosing the banana inside. The caramel flattens ok but is sticky and odd shaped and hard to work with. One piece of caramel rarely is enough to enclose a slice so I have to get 2 pieces to stick. It's a nightmare.

The chocolate dips ok but lots of times the whole mess falls into the chocolate. The peanuts stick fine.

So... I was thinking there's got to be a better way! I was thinking what if I make caramel and pour it into a pan... either over a layer of bananas or pour it and then place the bananas on top. Let it set up. Cut into shapes around the banana slices, stick in a toothpick, and dip in chocolate/nuts.

BUT... would the bananas and caramel stick together this way?? From my prior attemps with the wheels it seems that it's the banana juice that oozes out and prevent the caramel from sticking to the slice. Should I dust the slices with confectioner's sigar and/or cornstrch first?? Are there other tricks to make them stick together??

All help is appreciated!

Hmmm, if i were making these, i'd probably make caramel and pour it into caramel rulers or a lined pan. Let it cool, then spread the top with melted chocolate, and use that to adhere the banana slices to the caramel. Once that's set up, cut around the bananas (I wonder about a cookie cutter that's the right size - that could make it faster) and then dip in tempered chocolate and roll or sprinkle the nuts. You talk about using a toothpick - I'm guessing that's to keep it together and also as a dipping tool? Skip the toothpick and find some of the forum posts on dipping technique using a fork - you don't need to "spear" things to dip them (and get better results if you don't).

I wouldn't pour the caramel over the bananas, or put the bananas on when the caramel is hot, as hot caramel is very hot, and would cook the bananas.

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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Can you find small skewers or popsicle sticks? Those would probably hold the banana better than toothpicks.

Sounds like something I would add salt to. Yum!

Theresa :biggrin:

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

- Abraham Lincoln

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I agree about the popsicle sticks...better surface area. You might also try like 3" chunks of bananas. I think the freezer is going to be your best tool. if you could get the caramel to stick to the bananas just long enough to freeze, THEN dip in the chocolate and roll in peanuts, that would probably work. You might also try freezing the banana chunks on the sticks.

another thing is maybe dip the bananas in chocolate, then caramel, then chocolate and peanuts.

Stephanie Crocker

Sugar Bakery + Cafe

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Since the bananas provide a damp surface, you might also want to consider rolling the fruit in powdered sugar before dipping. It may aid in getting the caramel to stick.

Theresa :biggrin:

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

- Abraham Lincoln

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I made some little star cookies filled with caramel from the book called In the Sweet Kitchen--by Regan Daley--I piped the caramel onto the cookies. I think piping solves many many kitchen issues.

So if you could get a nice caramel and pipe it onto your bananas, let it set up, then dip in choco--or maybe even spoon the choco over--or hey I got it--pipe the chocolate. :biggrin:

It's a user friendly caramel:

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar

6 tablespoons condensed milk (which is one full quarter cup measure plus a half)

3 tablespoons dark corn syrup (spray the tablespoon first with Pam

(Add a teaspoon of vanilla after you cook it and it stops boiling.)

Put it all in a heavy saucepan and stirring constantly bring to a gentle boil then set the timer for two minutes while maintaining the boil and continuing the stirring. I add a drop of honey to prevent crystalization but you don't have to.

Now then, set a piping bag in a tall glass*, tip down, the bag opened up. When the mixture cools some, pour it halfway up into the piping bag. Wait for it to be cool enough to handle or wrap a towel around it and pipe away. I use parchment and just clip the tip off. Otherwise you'd be using perhaps a 4 or a 5 tip give or take.

So that would be several learning curves there and a bit of equipment to get but it's a nice caramel that you could mold easier than the other caramels I think.

Another idea is to get a nice strip of banana dipped in chocolate and drizzle the caramel on that. This caramel sets up nice so if the chocolate holds up the banana strip, the caramel could just be real pretty drizzled on top, a few big grains of salt. mmm

Caramel musings for you.

Edited to say--*the tall glass is just to hold the piping bag for you while you pour or scoop the mixture into the bag.

Edited by K8memphis (log)
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