As the summer heats up, every time I turn around the bananas in the fruit bowl are spotted and fully ripe. Banana ice-cream is one of my favorite recipes for these ripe bananas, and one of my favorite ice-cream flavors. This recipe requires little sugar or cream as the bananas provide a wonderful sweetness and texture without much help. I have made the recipe both with and without the rum and have not settled on a favorite so am including both options.
This recipe takes its origins from the Cuisinart Recipe Booklet, and after dozens of batches I have simplified and modified the recipe significantly.
Makes about 1 quart
- 3 ounces dark brown sugar (about 1/3 cup)
- 1 Tablespoon water
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 3 very ripe bananas
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- ½ cup heavy cream (see note 1 below)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla (or ½ tsp vanilla + 1 Tab. dark rum)
- ½ tsp. lemon juice
- 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips (about 1/3 cup) (see note 2 below)
In a large skillet stir and heat the brown sugar and water over medium heat until the sugar sizzles. Then stir in butter until melted. Slice the bananas into the skillet; cook and stir until the bananas are very soft and fragrant, about 3 minutes depending on how ripe the bananas are. Stir in the vanilla (or vanilla and rum) and cook until sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 additional minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the lemon juice.
Place the milk and cream in a blender, add the salt and the banana mixture. Blend until smooth. Place the covered blender container in refrigerator for at least 2 hours, until mixture is completely chilled.
Using your ice-cream maker, churn banana mixture until it is approaching desired thickness. While churning is underway, melt the bittersweet chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water, or using a double boiler. When ice-cream is nearly churned, pour a small stream of the melted chocolate into the churning ice-cream. Machine will freeze the chocolate and break it into tiny bits as it churns.
Freeze the newly made ice-cream in a pint container until 10 minutes before ready to serve. Let ice-cream soften slightly to serve. To get fancy, serve topped with whipped cream and toasted walnuts, but not necessary.
Note 1: Heavy cream can contain stabilizers mono and diglycerides that are sometimes made from gluten containing grains. Please look for a gluten free label or avoid the stabilizer by using organic cream or one with the stabilizer carrageenan.
Note 2: some manufacturers process chocolate chips on equipment used for gluten containing products so look for chips labeled gluten free (Hersey’s chips carry this label at the time I am writing this post) or for gluten free semi-sweet baking chocolate (Baker’s brand chocolate is gluten free at the time I am writing this post). thanks for making the extra effort to make it totally gluten free!