Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Banoffee Arctic Roll

Thanks Jude, I couldn't have done it without you.

Beware my friends: Arctic Roll is not for the weak-hearted. Let me specify I’m talking about creating it, not eating it. Eating it is a dream that should be shared amongst all humanity.

When I started on my journey to create my Banoffee Arctic Roll, the first hurdle was not eating all of Jude's ice cream. Little did I know that there was a whole lot of melty, sticky, uncontrollable deliciousness to come.
Warning: Please do not underestimate the power of Jude's Salted Caramel Ice Cream. Words cannot describe the taste-sensation you will experience.

One tip that I must give you is this: the rolling of the arctic roll will not go how you hoped it might. If it does I will be jealous and impressed. Mostly jealous. 

Having created my ’arctic roll’ on Sunday night, I went to bed with dreams of catastrophe and panic; having left a scene that resembled the aftermath of a tea party held by farmyard animals. Something like this equation:

Now you already know what I excitedly found on Monday morning because you can see evidence of the delightful arctic oblong which was created at the top of this here post. I woke up, the birds was singing, the sky was blue – I sliced open my arctic roll and there you have it. The freezer gremlin had come in the night and had turned what originally looked like a crime scene into an elegant and totally delicious, caramelly arctic oblong. Here's another photo, just in case you forgot how good it looks.

Banana bread + condensed milk caramel + Jude's salted caramel ice cream = Arctic HEAVEN

Now I don’t quite give this banana bread the credit it deserves in this recipe but perhaps I can revisit at a later date, once it’s had a little taste of the limelight I’m sure it’ll want more. To be totally honest - the mini arctic roll you see (with Jude's vanilla ice cream) is the back-up little guy I created when I thought all hope was lost with the big-un. Now I have a whole arctic roll family. 

TIP*: If you can create your ice cream sausage a day in advance this will be very helpful and time saving.

Quantities: These quantities make a lot. They make two big arctic rolls or one big arctic roll and a separate banana bread loaf.

Timing: Arctic Roll assembling is quick but freezing your shaped ice cream and creating your Dulce de leche takes a few hours, then you need everything to cool. Best to do these parts in advance unless you’ve got a whole Sunday to play with like I did.

Kitchen stuff:
Cling film
Lots of baking paper
Wire cooling rack
Cool house (Do not make this near a radiator)
Arctic roll baking tray or flat baking tray with 1 inch sides
Spatula or Palette knife
Electric hand whisk or strong man. I know which one I’d prefer
Large mixing bowl and a few smaller ones

Banana Bread:
175g or ¾ cup salted butter, room temperature
190g or 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
380g or 3 cups flour
1 ½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
360g or 1 ½ cups buttermilk (you can use Greek style yoghurt as an alternative, I have before and it works delightfully)
Half a lemon
About 4- 5 old speckled bananas

1 120ml tub of Jude’s Salted Caramel Ice Cream
Don't settle for less here - you won't get the same awe-inspiring creation if you use different ice cream. You can buy Jude's Ice Cream at most Waitrose and some Co-ops. Have a look at the website to find specifics

1 can of condensed Milk
OR 1 can Carnation Caramel (Dulce de leche) if you’re short of time


Preheat the oven to 175 degrees and grease your baking tray/loaf tin.

*ICE CREAM SAUSAGE: In order to mould your ice cream into a sausage shape, you will need to do the following. Take your ice cream out of the freezer and let it soften for 5-10 minutes. You don’t want it melty, you want it just soft enough to scoop out and mould a bit.

While ice cream is softening, take a sheet of baking paper about the size of your baking tray and put it on a flat surface. Scoop out enough of the ice cream into the middle to form a large sausage shape. How much ice cream you use depends on the size you want your arctic roll. Do this all quickly and roll the ice cream in the baking paper into a sausage shape – twist the edges. I then added an extra layer of cling film for security.

Put this in the freezer and let it freeze for as long as possible – preferably 3-4 hours.

CREATING CARAMEL: If you have purchased a tin of condensed milk, follow this recipe to turn it into caramel, or Dulce de leche.
In a large, high-sided pan, submerge the tin (or more if you want to make some for later) in cold water and put on a med-high heat. The water must cover the tins AT ALL TIMES otherwise your tin might explode which is not a mess you want to clean up.

Once the water has started boiling, turn the heat down slightly and simmer for 2 – 2½  hours. Keep checking the water regularly and topping it up at any opportunity to make sure the tins are covered.

After 2, 2½ hours take the pan off the heat and let it sit for 10 mins or so. The tins will be VERY HOT so using a slotted spoon, lift the tins out of the pan into a dish cloth and set on the side. Now wait for them to cool for about an hour.

MEANWHILE THE BANANAS: Smoosh the bananas with a fork or in a magimix with a big squeeze of lemon juice. Whether you blitz them totally smooth or keep some lumps is up to you, I like them smooth. Put them in a bowl and set aside for later.

In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. If you don’t know what sifting is, look at my Drizzly Chocolate and Orange Cake recipe.

MIX IT UP: Measure the buttermilk into a bowl or measuring jug. Using your electric hand mixer, or strength, beat the butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time then the vanilla extract. 

With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture alternating with the buttermilk until it is all combined. Stir in the smooshed bananas.

BAKE IT: Pour the batter into your prepared baking tray(s). You want the batter to be about 1-2 cm thick, remember it rises. This will take about 15-20 minutes in the centre of the oven. It is ready when a toothpick comes out clean and the sponge springs back slightly when you poke it (gently).

If you are creating a banana bread loaf as well, this will take about an hour – check it after 45 mins and then every 10/15 minutes until it’s done. 

When ready, let it cool for 5 mins before turning your cake carefully out on to a wire rack.

IN ALL ITS ARCTIC GLORY: Let everything cool. Before you assemble your arctic roll, your ingredients need to be cool or at least room temperature. Take a hint from the name – arctic.

Lift your slab of cake onto some baking parchment on a flat surface and spread it with a medium layer of Dulche de leche straight from the tin. If it is very big you may only want to use half the cake but be careful not to cut it too small, may be a good idea to cut it just before you roll to get proportions right.

Wash your hands with cold water. Take the ice cream sausage out of the freezer and speedily unwrap it. If you decide at this point that there is too much ice cream and not enough cake, take a very sharp knife and slice off a length of the sausage. Put your ice cream sausage in the centre of your caramel covered cake and carefully wrap up the sides to encase the ice cream.

Immediately wrap your arctic roll in baking paper and then cling film with twisted edges and put back in the freezer for a few hours.

Even if your wrapping process goes awry, bundle your ingredients into a roll, wrap it up and freeze it - the contents with 100% taste good and if your experience was anything like mine, it will look good too!

Thank you Jude. 

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