This dessert was created in the early 1950s at Brennan’s Restaurant in New Orleans. Today, we bring you a vegan version that is just as good as the original. It’s perfect for a Mardi Gras celebration!
Yesterday I promised to bring you a dessert that would extinguish the heat on your tongue that was caused from eating our spicy vegan Creole fried rice, as always, I kept my promise.
Introducing, Vegan Bananas Foster. No, this isn’t the latest celebrity baby name, it’s one of the most decadent desserts of all time. And thanks to an afternoon of playing around in the kitchen on President’s Day, the hubby and I created a vegan version that’s simply fabulous.
If you like bananas, ice cream, rum, orange, and caramel, then you’re going to LOVE this delicious dessert. It’s super easy to make, you just have to be careful when you flambé the rum sauce. Make sure to read the disclaimer at the bottom of this post, and in the recipe.
Bananas Foster was created in the early 1950’s by Paul Blange, head chef of the famous Brennan’s Restaurant in New Orleans. The dessert was named after Owen Brennan’s friend, Richard Foster. Over sixty years later, Brennan’s is still one of the most talked about restaurants in New Orleans, and they flambé approximately 35,000 pounds of bananas each year making their famous dessert.
If you look at any traditional Bananas Foster recipe you will see that the sauce is based on a lot of butter. The problem we had making this dessert vegan is that vegan butter isn’t heat stable, so it wouldn’t stand up to the heat and make a nice caramel sauce. My husband and I thought that coconut oil would work well, so we got to work. We melted the coconut oil, put the brown sugar in and started whisking it, but the sugar wasn’t really melting and spreading out the way that it should have. Then we added the orange juice and, Kaboom! The oil and sugar splattered up on us like crazy. We weren’t about to try and add the alcohol at that point, so we poured the oil and sugar in a bowl to let it cool before throwing it out, and the funniest thing happened. The sugar began to harden and when I played around with it with a fork it turned into spun sugar. I could have made some cool sugar decorations with it, but I didn’t have time. We were on a mission to make a vegan bananas foster, no time for playing.
For our next attempt we took a different route. We reduced the amount of coconut oil and added some almond milk creamer, in hopes that a little fat would prevent splatters and cause the sugar to spread out and turn into a caramel sauce. It worked! We didn’t have to dodge molten hot coconut oil and sugar splatters when we added the orange, the Grand Marnier, and the rum. More importantly, when we lit the rum to flambé the sauce, it didn’t explode. I have to admit, I was a little nervous, because I didn’t know how coconut oil would react to a flame. I suggested that we test it outside on our patio, but my husband just rolled his eyes and clicked the lighter. All I can say is, he’s lucky I was wrong, because he might have been writing a check for a kitchen remodel instead of enjoying a nice bowl of vegan bananas foster. 😉
Finally, after some trial and error, we were ready to taste it. I felt pretty confident that it would taste amazing because it smelled outrageously good while we were cooking the sauce. The addition of the coconut oil adds so much to the aroma, it was truly fantastic. I took a big bite of the caramelized bananas, the vegan vanilla ice cream, and the caramel rum sauce, and I was in heaven. It was a close my eyes and start humming kind of moment.
If you’ve never had bananas foster you just don’t know how incredible all of those flavors are when they come together. It’s too hard to even try to describe the taste in words, you just have to try it to understand.
Today is Fat Tuesday, so you know that Brennan’s is dishing out a ton of bananas foster tonight. If you’re in the mood to indulge and pretend that you’re right there with all of those crazy Mardi Gras celebrators, then whip up a batch of my vegan Creole fried rice, and make vegan bananas foster for dessert. Don’t worry about the calories, because for the next forty days, I’m going to be bringing you nothing but healthy and light recipes, so go ahead, indulge a little, you only live once!
Disclaimer and Safety Precautions: When igniting alcohol, use extreme caution. Remove the pan from the heat source before adding the alcohol, and make sure that there is plenty of space around the entire pan. Remove any towels, fabric, or combustible materials. Pour the alcohol into the pan and using a long match or lighter, light the alcohol by placing the flame just inside the outer edge of the pan. Stand as far back from the pan as possible, keeping your face and hands away from the pan. The flame will be a faint blue but will be very hot. It should extinguish in 5 to 10 seconds. Once the flame is out, hold the pan handle with an oven mitt, and gently shake the pan from side to side to coat the bananas with the sauce. Veganosity and its editors are not responsible for any injuries or damage that may occur while making this dessert. Make at your own risk.