Thanks,–another surprisingly easy recipe of love :)

A bunch of Bananas.
Image via Wikipedia

We had some friends over for lunch (almoço) on Sunday, and despite the heat and a generally relaxed attitude, I decided to try my hand at dessert.


I flipped through some ideas on Saturday, and the Upside-Down Banana-Coffee tart jumped out– primarily because we’d just bought a lot of bananas (I’m still on that smoothie kick). The other reason, of course, was that I had all the ingredients in the house 🙂

Before I hand you over to the good, good lovin’ at, I’ll note that I eliminated all the lemon details (zest and juice) from the recipe, and I used a store-bought puff-pastry dough. Also, be sure to tuck the edges of the pastry crust down into the sides of the pan…you won’t contain all of the delicious gooeyness, nor should you…but you want to keep some of it inside the tart 🙂

Upside-Down Banana-Coffee Tart Recipe

Upside-Down Banana-Coffee Tart
Difficulty: Hard


Total: 1 hr

Active: 25 mins

Makes: 12 servings

Upside-Down Banana-Coffee TartSee More in the Gallery

  By Regan Burns

We got the inspiration for this recipe from the French apple upside-down tart known as tarte Tatin. For our version, we’ve replaced the apples with bananas and infused the caramel with coffee.

What to buy: Look for firm-ripe bananas that are still tinged with a bit of green—if they are too ripe, they’ll turn to mush in the oven.

Special equipment: A 12-inch cast iron skillet is perfect for this recipe; however, if you don’t have one, any heavy-bottomed, oven-safe frying pan will work.

Be sure to have a platter or plate slightly larger than your skillet handy for turning out the tart once it’s cooled. One with a slight lip or rim is preferable, as the caramel tends to spread a little once the tart is unmolded.

Game plan: For a slacker solution, use high-quality store-bought pie dough in place of making your own.

This recipe was featured in our Cast Iron Cooking story.

…Get the rest of the ingredients, directions, reader comments (always worth reading!), and delicious gooey goodness here.


Love the idea- Mint Julep recipe via

I always loved the idea of mint juleps, but the one time I remember tasting one, I really didn’t like it. Bless for the background info on this drink… it seems like the idea of this drink is particularly beloved, though it is rarely consumed. Who knew?

Feel adventurous? Make one yourself 😉

Mint Julep Recipe


Total: Under 5 mins

Active: Under 5 mins

Makes: 1 drink

Mint JulepSee More in the Gallery

From: Field Guide to Cocktails , by Rob Chirico

The world-renowned Mint Julep is a mixture of mint, sugar, and bourbon, but some historians argue that the first Juleps may have been made with common brandy. If Freud is more talked about than read, the Mint Julep is more read about than drunk. One survey revealed that while 70 percent of Americans not from the South had never tasted a Mint Julep, 73 percent of Southerners had never had one either.

…Get the rest of the story (AND the recipe) at

Kiss me, I’m a milk shake (Guinness Milk Shake recipe, via

People get a little crazy for St. Patrick’s Day, which is, of course, part of the fun. Without the green booze, green icing, green stickers and pins, and stupid mass-produced shirts/aprons/hats, it would be just another saint’s day (not like St. Valentine, but rather one of the more boring, less marketable saints.)

Who needs that? Besides, I love booze. And icing. And with enough booze, I find kitsch amusing (even endearing, sometimes).

All the same, sometimes I like to indulge (in memory of the Saint, of course!) with a little less food-coloring and a little more flavor. When I saw had this recipe on their website, I knew it was the one.

For some, the idea of beer and ice cream might seem, well, nasty. The key here is that it is a stout with ice cream. I went through a beer milk shake (more of a beer float, really) phase in university with my friends. Any dark, rich (preferably microbrewed, for snob appeal) stout works. The stout+sweet ice cream becomes a rich, velvety, chocolatey goodness all of its own. You won’t get drunk (or buzzed) off of one of these (if you are in your late teens or early twenties, just stop reading and go drink a gallon of green beer), but you will appreciate the new flavor 🙂

So, without further ado, here ’tis:

Get the recipe at

Yummy, simple goodness: Boxty recipe from (gasp)

I’m loving simple, wholesome goodness these days– perhaps I’m going through one of those stop-and-smell-the-roses phases?– and this recipe made me simultaneously smile and say “Oh yum!” aloud in a room with only myself and the Puppy. To be honest, when I saw “boxty”, I mistakenly thought of the Irish soda bread that I consumed by the pound (or kilo) while visiting Achill Island… but it was an innocent and happy mistake as there are clearly no losers here!

(I didn’t sleep much last night, so forgive the ramble. Or don’t. The Boxty makes up for it.)

Without further ado…. Boxty via

Boxty (Irish Potato Pancake) Recipe

Get the full recipe at

More basics, thanks to Chow…

It borders on obsession, I know. I’m loving today. I always do. Chow is righteously cool.

Since I’m looking at helpful basics today, however, the ‘nagging question’ column in Chow seems like a logical stopping point. I was first looking at a fat-bastard plethora of potato skins recipes on Chow, and then stumbled into this helpful post… (back to the basics!)

Are Sprouted Potatoes Poisonous?

Published on Friday, July 25, 2008, by Roxanne Webber / Edit Post

It’s important to distinguish between the potatoes themselves and the sprouts that grow on them.

Potato sprouts are considered toxic due to their potentially high concentration of glycoalkaloids, says Dr. Nora Olsen, an associate extension professor and potato specialist at the University of Idaho.

…

Know Your Peppers – Feature – Food News – CHOW

Today feels like a good day to hit some of the basics. (That’s as deep as my reasoning goes, so don’t hold your breath for anything more profound.)

Peppers are among my favorite foods.

I love fresh red bell peppers (capsicum) from the farmers market.

Thai peppers can turn fried rice into Gradissima-Crack.

Padrón peppers are one of My Man and my favorite tapas here in Portugal (thanks, Spain!).

Just thinking of hot banana peppers on pizza makes me drool.

Pickled jalapeños help to stave off the Tex Mex DTs for this expat.

Ok. I’m making myself stop this list because it’s making me too hungry.

The point, however, is that I think pepper-knowledge is handy in the kitchen.

So, I’m sharing the link to’s “Know your Peppers” Feature for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy 😉 {NB: if you want to download a pepper poster, you can do so on the original page… pretty cool!}

Chile peppers are thought to have originated in South America, but they have been cultivated all over the world for centuries, resulting in a wide variety of species with different colors, shapes, flavors, and, of course, spiciness. We consulted pepper expert and grower David Winsberg from Northern California’s Happy Quail Farms to put together a chart of some common peppers as well as a few less common varieties that are now becoming available in the United States thanks to specialty growers like Winsberg. Average size and hotness scale (from 1 to 5) included.

… Heat up your pepper knowledge at Get the downlow, uses, heat rating, and other neat tidbits here 😉