The Best English Dessert Pie

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This delicious recipe for English Dessert Pie is an amazing recipe that you need to try! It is a perfect combination of sweet, and savory flavors, but also has a nice crunch to it, and yet at the same time is a gooey delight. Try making your own homemade Banoffee pie today! 

What The Pie Is Made Of

English dessert pie is a common name for English Banoffee Pie. It is a type of pie that makes your mouth water. It has a mixture of savory cream and softness but is balanced with a nice crunch. 

The name of the English dessert pie, banoffee pie is a combination of the words banana and toffee. Bananas and toffee are key ingredients, that help give it its iconic flavorful goodness. 

Banoffee pie, is traditionally made from a crust of English cookies, commonly termed as biscuits, or plain digestive biscuits. The name digestive biscuit occurred because the cookies have a substantial amount of baking soda inside of them, and baking soda helps move things along your digestive tract. Now that you understand the oddity of the name of the cookies or biscuits traditionally used… Let’s get started.

To make the crust, finely crush the cookies and mix with butter. If you are looking to purchase digestive biscuits, be sure that you pick up the plain ones. These cookies also come in chocolate, but for the pie crust you will want to use plain. The crust is similar to a graham cracker crust. If you live in the United States, English cookies can be difficult to find at your local grocery store. You might have better luck finding them in larger stores, and they will likely be located near other imported cookies. A graham cracker crust is also a good substitute for the crust of your English dessert pie if you are unable to find English cookies. 

Banoffee Pie Origin 

This tasty pie was invented early in the 1970s. Nigel Mackenzie who owned the Hungry Monk Restaurant along with his chef Ian Dowding, were the creators of the original Banoffee Pie. Their creation was based on an American dessert called Blum’s Coffee Toffee Pie. It did not include any fruit, but Mackenzie and Dowding improved the recipe by experimenting with adding apples then mandarin oranges to the pie. They finally landed on the perfect combination of bananas and toffee, with a little bit of coffee. 

The original creation by Mackenzie and Dowding, contained a short crust for its base. This crust has since been replaced with biscuits that are crumbled and mixed together with butter. The result is that the pie lasts longer because crushed biscuits stay fresh longer than short crust did. 

The creators of the English dessert pie intended the dessert to be topped with homemade whipped cream, that is slightly flavored with coffee. Sometimes the whipped cream is replaced with store bought whipped cream or whipped cream in a spray can. 

The name of Banoffee pie was given to the pie as a temporary name by Mackenzie and Dowding. However, once the name was given, it stuck. 

The dessert was offered on the menu temporarily, in the Hungry Monk Restaurant when it was first created. Each one of the customers enjoyed eating it so much, that it was never removed from their menu. 

The delicious pie continued to rise in popularity and demand. In 1997, the recipe was added into the Oxford English Dictionary. Today, you can sometimes even find the pie recipe printed on the back of a Nestle’s sweetened condensed milk can. 

When creating your English dessert pie at home there are a few things to consider, such as the type of pan you should use, the kind of crust you should make, what ingredients you need to make the toffee, and how to make homemade whipped cream. Covering these items will help you make a fantastic pie at home. 

What Kind Of Pan To Use

There are a few different types of pans you can choose to make your Banoffee pie that will work well. Since this pie does not get cooked, it is simply a matter of preference. 

Kinds Of Pans

tart pan works very well. This allows for a shallow pie and looks beautiful when served. You can also use a spring form pan. This works nicely because it’s easier to get the pie out and it looks very nice. It also allows you to make a thicker pie if you prefer. Another great option is to use a pie plate. This option could be a little tricky to get the pieces out of the pan, but otherwise works very well. These options of a tart pan, spring form pan and pie plate all work well. It is up to you and your personal preference. 

Crust

The English dessert pie is typically made with English cookies that have been finely crushed. The biscuits are then mixed with butter and patted into a crust. If you’re unable to find English cookies for the crust, you can also make a crust using graham crackers and melted butter. To make this substituted graham cracker crust, simply crush the graham crackers very fine. If you have a food processor, it is simple to throw the crackers into the food processor and pulse them for a few minutes. If not, you can place them in a sealable plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin. Once crushed, mix in melted butter, and there you have your graham cracker crust substitute. 

What Is The Toffee Section

The toffee part of the pie is so yummy! It is made from melting butter and mixing with sugar, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla, over low to medium heat. Once all the ingredients are mixed together, bring the mixture to a boil and allow to consistently boil for a few minutes. Once the mixture has boiled, remove it from the heat and allow to cool before adding to your pie.  The toffee provides a nice blanket to stick the slices of bananas into. When you bite into the pie, you get a delicious bite of toffee and banana that is delicious! 

Whipped Cream Topping

The English dessert pie is topped with whipped cream. This is an important part because it really helps to pull all of the ingredients of the pie together. Some recipes instruct you to add a little bit of instant coffee to your whipped cream topping, to give it a slight coffee flavor. However, if you really don’t like coffee this part can be left out. And, if you do leave this part out, it is important to make sure that your whipped cream is stabilized. 

What does it mean to stabilize whipped cream? When you whip your whipped cream, you change the form it was in. It has now become all light and fluffy. For it to stay light and airy, you will need to add in another ingredient to help it to stay light and airy. If you do not, it will become a runny icky mess. 

How to Stabilize Whipped Cream

After you have whipped your cream with a mixer on high for a few minutes, you will begin to see stiff peaks form. You will want to stop whipping once you see that it can retain its form. Then to stabilize it, add a little bit of one of the following to help it to stay stiff. Ingredients to stabilize: gelatin, cornstarch, powdered sugar, milk powder, or pudding mix. My favorite ingredient to use is powdered sugar. By adding a tablespoon or two to the whipped cream, it helps to make it sweeter and allows it to retain the consistency of whipped cream. 

Now that you know all about this delightful English dessert pie, let’s help you begin to make it at home! Follow these instructions or see the recipe below for step-by-step instructions. 

Equipment

The equipment you will need to create your Banoffee pie:

Pie plate, tart pan or spring form pan. If you have one of these that is eight or nine inches in diameter that will work best. 

If you have a food processor, to help crush the cookie crust, this will be very helpful. If you don’t then you can use a Ziploc bag and a rolling pin. 

Stand mixer or handheld mixer. If you have one of these, it will be helpful in mixing together the ingredients. 

Sauce pan for making the toffee topping on your stove top. 

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 375F. Begin with your crust. You can use English cookies or graham crackers. Whatever you are able to find will work, and still taste delicious! In a food processor add 10 ounces of cookies and pulse until they are finely crushed. Next add in 12 tablespoons butter. Pulse again until butter is completely mixed in. Grease the bottom of your baking pan, then add the cookie mixture. Pack to the bottom and sides. If you are struggling to get it to stick, try using a piece of parchment paper or wax paper to pat it into place. Bake for 10 minutes, or until it begins to turn slightly golden. Remove and allow to cool to room temperature. If your crust moved after it baked, you can use wax paper and pat it back into place again, before it cools. 

Now it is time to make the toffee filling. To make this, place saucepan over medium – low heat. Add 6 tablespoons of butter and allow to melt. Add 2/3 cup brown sugar and mix well. Pour in 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk and bring to a boil. Be sure that you are stirring the mixture consistently; this will help to prevent it from burning to the bottom of the pan.  Boil for 5 to 10 minutes, or until it becomes thick. Be sure you continue to stir constantly while mixture boils. Once thick, mix 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Remove from heat and pour into prepared crust. Allow the toffee in the crust to cool for 1 hour in the fridge.

When you are nearing the end of one hour that the pie has been in the fridge, you can begin to create the whipped cream. To make your whipped cream topping, pour 2 cups of heavy cream into your mixing bowl, and beat cream on high until stiff peaks begin to form. Once you see the peaks begin to form, turn your mixer off. Add in 2 teaspoons instant coffee powder (this is optional). Also add in 1 teaspoon vanilla and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar. Mix for a few seconds on high, just until everything is completely dissolved. Be careful that you don’t beat the cream too much, otherwise you will end up with some sweet, coffee butter. 

Remove your pie pan with the crust and cooled toffee from your fridge. Cut three to four bananas into slices. Your slices should be 1/3 to ½ inches in thick. Place your slices of banana on the toffee. Then top with whipped cream. Spread the whipped cream out so that it evenly covers the top of the pie. If you would like to add a bit of flair to your pie, you can top with chocolate shavings, sprinkle with cocoa powder or drizzle with a bit of melted chocolate. 

You can serve right away or place your pie in the fridge to store before serving. If you are not serving immediately, be sure to keep the pie in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it. Because of the cream included in the pie, it should not sit out at room temperature for any longer than two hours.  This pie can be stored in the fridge for up to three days, although it is best eaten the first day or two. It can also be frozen, however the bananas will turn brown and be slightly mushy. It is best enjoyed fresh. 

The English dessert pie is a simple dessert to make and has a perfect blend of sweet, savory and deliciousness! Try making yours at home today and let us know what you think! We love to hear from you! 

What is your favorite English dessert? 

If you love the whipped cream topping on this English Dessert Pie, you should check out this recipe for Fresh Whipped Cream! It is finger licking good!

Also be sure to check out our Tortilla Soup recipe! Then, if you are trying to decide what to make for dinner tonight, check out I Feel Like Chicken Tonight! You guessed it, we have some fabulous chicken ideas for you!

The Best English Dessert Pie

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time8 mins
Total Time28 mins
Course: Dessert
Keyword: banoffee pie, dessert, english, english dessert pie, pie
Servings: 6 slices

Ingredients

Crust

  • 10 ounces English cookies crushed
  • 12 tablespoons butter melted
  • OR
  • 1 package graham crackers
  • 8 – 12 tablespoons butter melted

Toffee

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • cup brown sugar
  • 14 ounces can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Filling

  • 3 – 4  bananas cut in slices ½ to 1/3 inch thick

Topping

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee powder optional
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Garnish

  • Chocolate shavings optional
  • Cocoa powder optional
  • Melted chocolate drizzle optional

Instructions

Crust

  • Preheat your oven to 375F.
  • In a food processor add 10 ounces of cookies and pulse until they are finely crushed.
  • Next add in 12 tablespoons butter. Pulse again until butter is completely mixed in. Grease the bottom of your baking pan, then add the cookie mixture. Pack to the bottom and sides.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, or until it begins to turn slightly golden. Remove and allow to cool to room temperature.

Toffee

  • In saucepan over medium – low heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter and allow to melt. Add 2/3 cup brown sugar and mix well. Pour in 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk and bring to a boil stiring constantly.
  • Boil for 5 to 10 minutes, or until it becomes thick. 
  • Once thick, mix 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Remove from heat and pour into prepared crust.
  • Allow the toffee in the crust to cool for 1 hour in the fridge. 

Filling

  • Cut three to four bananas into slices. Your slices should be 1/3 to ½ inches in thick. Place your slices of banana on the toffee. 

Topping

  • Pour 2 cups of heavy cream into your mixing bowl, and beat cream on high until stiff peaks begin to form.
  • Add in 2 teaspoons instant coffee powder (this is optional). Also add in 1 teaspoon vanilla and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar. Mix for a few seconds on high, just until everything is completely dissolved.
  • Spread the whipped cream out so that it evenly covers the top of the pie. 

Garnish

  • If you desire to add a flair to your pie you can sprinkle chocolate shavings on top of the whipped cream.
  • You could also sprinkle the top with cocoa powder.
  • Another idea is to melt chocolate and drizzle accross the top of your pie. Whatever you prefer will be great!
  • Store in the fridge until you are ready to serve. Serve and enjoy!

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