Simone Grandmain

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February 19, 2014
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Simone Appetit: Be the cool parents, serve banana splits

During Ski Skate Week, there seems to be a lot of kid juggling. Your Timmy and Susie are over at Bobbie’s and Kelly’s, then Mr. and Mrs. Smith are sending little Debbie (the child, not the snack cakes) over to your place.

The combination of no snow and kids with free time has by now probably pushed you to the breaking point and there is still that sleepover in your loft upstairs you don’t remember agreeing to. The one your boss’s kid is attending, meaning the house has to be immaculate, you have to wear a bra, and the menu must be memorable enough to prompt a quick response from the visiting 12-year-old when her parents ask “What’d you have?”

Who could forget three scoops of ice cream, toppings galore, whipped cream and a cherry? Not my thighs, I’ll tell you that. They are made of memory foam or something. But I digress.

A banana split might seem like an out-of-season menu item for February, but many cultures beg to differ. In Tokyo, where I have spent some time, the Häagen-Dazs parlor is packed during the winter months.

Likewise, while in New Zealand, I saw children and adults alike eating ice cream cones on sub-zero mornings. I think what I just did here is not name dropping, but food dropping. Bottom line: anytime is a great time for ice cream. You scream, I scream — and that will all stop once the kids are back in school.

Old-fashioned banana split

Ingredients:

Following are the classic Banana Split components, but I like to use either Neapolitan ice cream scoops or (my favorite) Spumoni. The Safeway Select Spumoni is not always available but, when it is, it is a happy day for me and not for the kids — they get none. For the toppings, I go with Smucker’s and am partial to their new dark chocolate.

For each individual serving (again, not sharable) you will need:

1 medium banana, peeled and split lengthwise

1 scoop each vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream

2 tablespoons sliced fresh strawberries or strawberry ice cream topping

2 tablespoons pineapple chunks or pineapple ice cream topping

2 tablespoon chocolate syrup or heavy duty chocolate ice cream topping

generous squirts of whipped cream

1 tablespoon chopped roasted peanuts (or dry roasted almonds)

1 maraschino cherry with stem

Preparation:

Place banana halves on opposite sides of a shallow dessert or soup bowl; place scoops of ice cream between bananas. Top each scoop with one choice of ice cream topping (I like vanilla with strawberry topping, chocolate with pineapple topping and strawberry with chocolate topping). Smother all with whipped cream, sprinkle on nuts, and top with cherry. Serve immediately. 

Hot ‘apple pie’ banana split

Ingredients:

1 medium banana, peeled and split lengthwise

3 scoops vanilla ice cream

3 tablespoons canned apple pie filling, heated

3 tablespoons caramel ice cream topping

1/4 cup granola

generous squirts of whipped cream

1 tablespoon chopped roasted peanuts (or dry roasted almonds)

1 maraschino cherry with stem

P reparation:

Place banana halves on opposite sides of a shallow dessert or soup bowl; place scoops of ice cream between bananas. Top scoops with caramel syrup, followed by the hot apple pie filling. Sprinkle on granola. Smother all with whipped cream, sprinkle on nuts, and top with cherry. Serve immediately. 

Simone Grandmain is an internationally published travel and food writer who currently calls Truckee-Tahoe home. She welcomes your recipes, kitchen “must-haves” and food news at simone_grandmain@hotmail.com.


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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated Feb 20, 2014 10:41AM Published Feb 19, 2014 12:40PM Copyright 2014 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.