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by Eric Lanlard (Mitchell Beazley, 2012)

Eric Lanlard is a pastry chef whose technical brilliance is matched by his feel for texture and flavour and exceeded only by his charm. This book is probably the most accessible for the novice or hesitant baker, and I've chosen this recipe not only because it was irresistibly tempting but also for its inviting and welcoming ease.

Banana and Rum Pie

This rich exotic pie is full of delicious flavours. The fluffy vanilla cream topping is a great contrast to the filling.

Serves 8

Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus chilling

Cooking time: 40 minutes



  • 100g (3½oz) unsalted butter
  • 200g (7oz) digestive biscuits, crushed
  • 3 large ripe bananas, sliced
  • 150g (5oz) dark muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 2 eggs
  • 200ml coconut cream
  • 3 tbsp dark rum
  • 350ml (12fl oz) whipping cream
  • 75g (3oz) golden icing sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla paste or extract
  • 40g (1½oz) dark chocolate, grated


  1. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan and add the crushed digestive biscuits, stirring to coat them well. Press the mixture into a 23cm (9in) diameter shallow pie plate or dish, covering the sides, too. Bake in a preheated oven, 180°C (fan 160°C)/350°F/gas mark 4, for 10 minutes, or until fragrant.
  2. Remove the dish from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 160°C (fan 140°C)/325°F/gas mark 3.
  3. Put the banana slices on a sheet of kitchen foil and toss them with the muscovado sugar and spices, coating them all over. Cover with another sheet of kitchen foil, place on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until mushy. Remove from the oven, but leave the oven turned on.
  4. Put the eggs, coconut cream and rum into a bowl and beat well. Stir in the cooked bananas. Pour this mixture into the pie base and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until wobbly. Cool completely in the dish.
  5. Whip the cream, golden icing sugar and vanilla to form nice soft peaks. Pile high on top of the pie and sprinkle generously with the grated chocolate. Chill for at least one hour before serving.

Tip The best way to crush biscuits is to put them inside a strong plastic food bag and bash them with a rolling pin.