real bananas, fake ice cream

This is one for the banana lovers.

In the Good Living section of the Sydney Morning Herald a couple of weeks ago, I read about a sneaky mother’s brilliant idea of making fruit puree “ice cream” for her kids. Like most children, her little ones could eat ice cream every day if allowed. Instead of depriving them, she chopped up a couple of over-ripe bananas, froze and then food processed them. It looked, felt and tasted like ice cream. A revelation.

If you blitz bananas in the food processor for a minute or two, the frozen bananas yield a silky, creamy and perfectly balanced fice cream (fake ice cream, if you will. You won’t? Ok.) It’s best to let your bananas thaw for a few minutes so you spend less time pureeing. It will look like a chunky dry glob for a good 30 seconds there, but press on and it will give way to a frozen treat. You honestly wouldn’t believe there was nothing else in there besides fruit. The banana’s natural consistency creates this non-dairy smoothness like no other fruit can.

I don’t have any sweet-toothed children to fool, but I could certainly be talked into an ice cream every day. This is a fabulous compromise for a banana fan – an indulgent feeling dessert with no added sugar or dairy. A spoonful of peanut butter alongside a scoop of our banana “ice cream” and I’m on another planet. I swear, it’s that good.

It’s perfect if you’re not up to the task of baking with your over-ripe bananas and not in the business of wasting delicious fruit. I should note that your bananas don’t necessarily have to be over-ripe but definitely don’t make them under-ripe, they won’t be sweet enough to fool children or artificial banana flavoring enthusiasts.

Bananas (however many you want to use), sliced

Place a layer of sliced bananas on a plate lined with baking paper. If you have more bananas than surface area on your plate, place another sheet of baking paper over your first layer and place more bananas on top of that.
Freeze for 2-3 hours or overnight.
Remove from freezer and let sit out for about 3-4 minutes.
Place in the food processor and process for 1 to 2 minutes until the consistency is creamy. Serve like ice cream.

It refreezes well and will maintain its ice cream-like texture.


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