Bananas Foster…there aren’t many more dramatic, glamorously celebratory desserts. A tropical, rich concoction…it’s boozy sauce set aflame! Tempted to ring in 2017 with this decadence I realized…you are breaking two of the cardinal rules of boat safety: no bananas (maritime bad luck magnets), and fire (the only thing, other than more water coming on than you can remove, that threatens a boat). Could we eat it while wearing PFDs, somehow negating our two boat safety strikes by doubling down irrationally in favor of other safety measures? Ridiculous…then, perhaps giddy with having moved home to the bayou, Captain Peter compromised, reasoning that bananas are only bad luck AT SEA — not in the slip. And that similarly, while tied up, he was willing to light individual bread puddings on fire on the transom grill. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
Whisk together four large eggs, two cups whole milk, 1/4 cup brown sugar, two teaspoons vanilla, and a tablespoon of Steen’s Cane Syrup, and mash in your ripest banana.
Wait, don’t have Steen’s Cane Syrup? Yeah, New Year’s resolution for you…move somewhere that does. But in the meantime, you might be able to use light molasses — that’s what it tastes like. We have Steen’s Cane Syrup…so I’m not motivated to try substitutions, and am not enough of a food chemist to know if a difference between the two would impact baking.
Tear up half a large loaf of soft french bread — about 5 cups — and add to the whisked liquids.
Shmoosh this all together really well. Not going to lie…this is best done, like meatloaf, by just taking off your wedding ring and getting on in there with your hands. And calories don’t count if all you’re doing is licking off your hands after a necessary culinary maneuver. Let this sit for about five minutes.
Combine 1/8 cup of flour, a teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder well, and sprinkle it over the soaked bread, stirring in well.
You can bake these in greased muffin cups, or use paper liners. The bread pudding will stick to the paper liners a bit, but it does make cleanup easier. Mind you, you probably won’t light those in paper liners on fire! If you happen to have a muffin tin in the shape of little Christmas trees, well…’tis the season! You will need a dozen cups in total.
Fill the cups half-full with the soaked bread mixture.
Top with banana coins — three additional bananas should cover the twelve muffins.
Then cover the bananas (as best you can…I may have been overzealous in my first fill) with the remaining bread mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until the puddings puff up and a knife or toothpick comes out clean.
Meanwhile, make the sauce. Melt a stick of butter with a cup of brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon.
Add 1/2 cup banana liqueur and a dash of rum (maybe a couple tablespoons), slice in one additional banana, and boil vigorously over medium heat until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Immediately pour half the sauce over the puddings, reserving half to pass at the table. Wipe out the pan and heat another 1/3 cup of rum over medium heat without boiling.
Pour the hot rum over the top and ignite with a long match held just above — lighting the fumes, and not the sauce itself. Let the flames die down, and climb back below to enjoy in the warmth of the cabin!