Recipe: Banoffee Pie with Java Whip

I had that all too common moment of panic and regret upon looking in my cupboards and seeing all the odds and ends that were getting ominously close to the end of their poor little shelf lives.  This pie is quick and super easy – devised to use up some of my pantry gems.

Banoffee Pie was originally created at The Hungry Monk restaurant in England, but is now seen all over the world.   Though the original recipe is considerably more involved, calling for a pastry crust and plain whip cream, I had the ready made crust on hand, and I love the combination of the slightly tart coffee flavour with the ultra sweet caramel.

I recommend making the caramel the night before, as the prep time is quite lengthy.

Banoffee Pie with Java Whip

1 Graham cookie pie crust
3 moderately ripe bananas, sliced
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
250ml (min) whipped cream
1 tbsp white sugar
Ice Java Cappucino syrup (optional)
Chocolate Sprinkles (optional)

Step 1:
Transforming your sweetened condensed milk to “caramel”.  There are considerable urban legends surrounding the process I describe below.  It is true if not done properly it could prove dangerous, but if instructions are followed it should be fine.

Place 2 unopened cans in large stock pot.  Fill with water until cans covered with minimum 2″ water.  Place lid.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to hard simmer for 2 hrs, checking frequently to be sure the water has not evaporated.  Do not let the water get below 2″ above cans.  Remove stock pot from heat and remove cans carefully from water.  DO NOT OPEN.  Wait until can is room temperature.  If you open while can is hot, dangerously hot caramel will spill out and if anything, you will have a huge mess to clean up.  Once room temperature, open can.  Voila!  Caramel!

easy caramel

Sweetened condensed milk, magically transformed

Step 2:
Prep Graham crust for use.  layer half of your caramel into crust.  Layer sliced bananas on top of caramel.  Layer remaining caramel on top of bananas.  Sprinkle sparingly with cinnamon.

Caramel, layered with apples, layered with caramel !!

Caramel, layered with bananas, layered with caramel !!

Java Whip
:  As you are whipping your delicious, fluffy whip cream, add Ice Java Coffee syrup or similar and sugar to taste.  Top pie with whipped cream and sprinkles.  Chill before serving.

Sweet, sweet, gooey deliciousness!

Recipe: Happy Husband Muffins

Happy Husband Muffins

I am a huge believer in the bulk section of my grocery store.  Those little buckets of budget wonder are always full of interesting potential flavour combinations.  Don’t be shy to try different nut and dried fruits for this recipe. This particular nut combination is my husbands decided favorite as he “doesn’t like cooked fruit”.  Once cooled, wrap individually in plastic wrap for easy on the go lunches.

NOTE:  If you omit the oats, omit the maple syrup as well, and vice versa.

2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup canola oil
3 eggs
1/4 cup REAL maple syrup (optional – see note)
1 medium apple, peeled and grated
2 tsp vanilla extract

3-4 carrots, peeled and grated
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup whole pistachios
1/4 cup chopped almonds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup baking oats

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
in a large bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.  Set Aside.

In mixer with paddle attachment, combine oil, eggs, maple syrup, vanilla and apple.

Slowly add dry ingredients to mixer, until just combined.
Fold in carrots, coconut, pecans, pistachios, almonds, pumpkin seeds and oats.


Grease or line muffin tin.  Fill cups to JUST full.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25min.  Check muffins at 17min to be sure by inserting a clean knife into center of muffin.  Once knife comes out nearly clean, muffins are done.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for five minutes in the tin on a rack.   After 5 min remove from tin and allow to cool completely.

Happy Baking!

Pepper Poached Eggs

As promised here is my rendition of the Bell Pepper Poached Eggs from Recipes from my Kitchen.  This website is incredible – recipes for everything under the sun.  I strongly recommend it as all the recipes are original and totally approachable.   Anyway, back to the food.  See my slideshow at the end for how it all turned out!!

I used:

1 Red Bell Pepper
1 egg
1/3 slice german butter cheese
1/4 cup thinly sliced romaine lettuce hearts (trust me on this one)
red pepper bits (leftovers from red pepper lid cut off of pepper “cup”)
large pinch garlic powder
large pinch chili seasoning
1 drop Blair’s Golden Death Sauce (only 1 drop/pepper)

I did it in the following order:

1. Sliced top off pepper
2. put in muffin tin
3. Added egg
4. Added lettuce, cheese and pepper pieces
5. added spices and hot sauce
6. stirred it all up (wanted more of an omlette)

cooked for about 35 minutes

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Love, Hestia

Best Roast Beets

My go to easy & mindless beets recipe.  Keep in mind that this takes 45minutes to cook, so do this first and throw it in the oven.  By the time it is done, the rest of dinner will be too!

3-4 large, firm beets

1-2 bulbs of garlic, separated and peeled

2 tsp of good quality coarse sea salt

2 tbsp ground black pepper

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar (optional)

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.

Peel & cut beets into 2″ x 1″ rectangles and put in pan.  I use a loaf pan because thats what I have.


beets cut and ready for seasoning

Next add garlic cloves.  Use as much as you are comfortable with.  The garlic gets yummy and caramalized in the roasting…

beets with their bff's The Cloves

Next add salt and pepper balsamic vinegar and olive oil to pan.

season's up!

Mix to thoroughly coat beets and then roast in the oven for approximately 45 minutes.  Shake beets 1x to ensure even roasting.  Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

bon apetit!