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Banana tatin with vanilla bean ice cream, toasted pecans and medjool date syrup

A sweet, nutty twist on the classic tart


  • 200g caster sugar
  • 50g unsalted butter 
  • Juice of 1 lemon, or a splash of rum
  • 8 medium bananas
  • Puff pastry
  • 12 fresh medjool dates
  • 1 tsp honey
  • Small handful of pecans
  • Vanilla bean ice cream to serve


  1. Preheat your oven to 200˚C/180˚C fan-assisted/gas mark 6. Place the sugar into a large ovenproof frying pan, approximately 30cm in diameter (or you could line a round cake tin and pour the caramel into the base). Cook over a moderate heat until the sugar begins to melt and caramelise. Once the sugar is a dark amber colour, remove from the heat and add the butter and lemon juice (or rum). Stir until the butter has melted into the caramel. Be careful, as this will be very hot. 
  2. Peel the bananas and cut in half lengthways. Place the bananas cut side down into the hot caramel, making sure they are evenly distributed. If you’re using a cake tin, transfer the toffee mixture to a cake tin and place the bananas cut side down on top. Top with a circle of puff pastry, carefully tucking down the sides. 
  3. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the pastry is dark golden in colour.  
  4. Meanwhile, cover the dates with warm water and a teaspoon of honey. Leave to soak for 30 minutes. In a small pan, toast the pecans until they become fragrant. Remove from the heat and roughly chop into chunky pieces. Set aside.  
  5. Once the tatin is golden, remove from the oven and place a serving plate upside down over the top of the pan, and flip the tatin out. Be careful, as the caramel will be very hot and sticky. Pour over any excess caramel. Blitz the dates until smooth. Serve with vanilla bean ice cream, a drizzle of date syrup and a scattering of toasted pecans.

Recipe by Jody Spencer

Taste Buds chef: Jody Spencer

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