Banoffee pie is a type of dessert that was first created at a pub in England. It consists of a pastry pie shell that is filled with condensed milk toffee and bananas and topped with whipped cream mixed with coffee and some sugar. The original recipe for the dish calls for everything to be made from scratch, though very quickly assembled versions developed as more premade ingredients became available. One of the more unique aspects of the dish is the way in which the toffee is made, because it involves cooking an unopened can of condensed milk. The name of the pie, banoffee, is a word that was created by combining the words "banana" and "toffee", the two main ingredients.
The step that takes the longest when making banoffee pie is creating the toffee. Toffee is just caramelized sugar and cream. The recipe creates toffee by taking unopened cans of condensed milk and submerging them completely in boiling water for at least three hours. The heat causes the sugars inside the can to caramelize. There is a risk that the cans could burst if the water level drops too low, so a safer way is to boil the cans for a moment and then transfer the pan to an oven for three hours or more.
The original banoffee pie recipe uses a flour, butter and egg pie crust. The ingredients are mixed together to form a solid dough that is rolled out until somewhat thin. This is placed in a pie tin, weighted down and blind baked until the crust has set and browned a little.
Once the toffee and the crust are completed, the banoffee pie can be assembled. The cooled toffee is poured into the pie crust to form the bottom layer. The bananas are cut down the center and placed on top of the toffee so they cover it as much as possible. Cream is then whipped and combined with some coffee and sugar. The whipped cream is placed on top of the pie in a generous layer, completing the dessert.
Banoffee pie can actually be made very quickly using mostly premade ingredients. The toffee is frequently sold in grocery stores — particularly Spanish stores — under the name dulce de leche. Premade whipped cream or dessert toppings can be used, as well as frozen pie crusts or a graham cracker crust. The finished banoffee pie might have a slightly different flavor when made this way, but it can be assembled fairly quickly and does not need to be baked.