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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Super Bowl Recap and Praline Bananas Foster Recipe - just in time for Valentine's Day!

I just had to share a few photos & details from our "Savor the Moment" Super Bowl spread!
We started with the Alligator Eye Dip (pg. 54) – for a vegetarian dish I have to say - YUMMY! The combination of black eyed peas, black beans, green onions, green chilis, black olives, tomatoes and fresh cilantro makes for a winning team. I have to thank Caroline Angstadt, fellow Junior League Member, who suggested a few months ago that I make this particular dip for Super Bowl Sunday. Caroline, you were right on – thanks so much!
A few preparations tips: for salad oil I used Bertolli light olive oil; you can really use any “bland” oil you would normally use to make a salad dressing. Also, the recipe calls for 20 chopped green onions – resist the urge to leave some out. It really tastes great with all 20! The only thing I would which add to this recipe that is not included in the ingredient list is salt. The recipe calls for garlic salt but this dish really needed a good dose of regular salt (I used kosher) as well to give it great flavor. I served the dip with some tortilla chips and we dove in!
Wine Pairing: 2007 Francis Coppola Pinot Noir Silver Label Diamond Collection. We expected this red to pair better with the Muffuletta; but with it’s yummy flavors of black cherry, currant, spice and earthy, forest floor, it actually went better with the Alligator Eye Dip.

Game Day Muffuletta (pg. 139) – Another winner! I would definitely make this mountainous, delicious sandwich again. It’s perfect for watching a game, an outdoor party or picnic and it travels well too. I used a round loaf of White Mountain Bread and after slicing the loaf in half horizontally and hollowing out the bottom a bit, I brushed the bottom layer with garlic that I had sauteed in olive oil with a little dried oregano. I could have stopped right there and used that as a dipping sauce for the bread but I proceeded with the recipe and piled on layers of ham, turkey, salami and provolone cheese.
The recipe also calls for marinated vegetables so I used Flora brand “Giardiniera.” According to Wikipedia, Giardiniera is an Italian or Italian-American relish of pickled vegetables in vinegar or oil. Common vegetables in the Italian version, also called sotto aceti, include onions, celery, zucchini, carrots and cauliflower, pickled vegetables in red- or white-wine vinegar. The jar I used contained carrots, peppers, olives, celery and cauliflower in white vinegar and really added a fabulous flavor and “tang” to the sandwich.
Wine Pairing: 2008 Cupcake Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough. This 90 point rated, $10 bottle was a pleasant surprise with its bright, juicy flavors of Meyer lemon, lime and nectarine. It really accentuated the tangy flavors in the Muffuletta and was a very nice match. Who knew? This is a great Everyday Wine to keep handy in your fridge and will pair nicely with a wide variety of dishes.

Praline Bananas Foster (pg. 237) – This is one of my favorite desserts of all time AND I am quite certain this particular recipe was largely responsible for the New Orleans Saints winning the Super Bowl. We had just sat down to eat it Sunday when the Saints picked off Peyton and scored that game changing touchdown. In addition to having magical powers, this luscious dessert would also be a wonderful to serve your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day! It’s pretty easy to make AND you get to light it on fire. That’s what I call a win-win! I have to confess though, I did make a few minor adjustment. For the margarine, I used good ol' butter and for the frozen yogurt I used my favorite Häagen-Dazs Vanilla ice cream. That said, here is the original recipe:

Praline Bananas Foster:
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
½ cup evaporated skim milk
2 Tablespoons chopped pecans, toasted
¼ cup praline liqueur or dark rum
2 teaspoons reduced-calorie margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 medium firm ripe bananas
2 cups low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt
Combine the brown sugar and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Stir in the milk gradually. Cook over medium, heat until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens slightly, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and add the pecans liqueur, margarine and vanilla. Stir until the margarine melts.
Cut each banana into halves crosswise and then lengthwise. Place the bananas in a heavy skillet and add the praline mixture. Carefully flambé the bananas.
Spoon ½ cup frozen yogurt into each of 4 dessert dishes. Top each with 2 banana slices and 3 Tablespoons of praline sauce. Serves four.
Wine Pairing: Great pairings for this dish would be a St. Supéry Vineyards Moscato or a Trefethen Late Harvest Riesling.


  1. Wow Wow Wow. You rock girl. Don't change anything. Marsha XXOOXX's

  2. All looks great... what a great excuse for foodie fun!

  3. I found your blog after Googling "Praline Bananas Foster" because I am preparing it for my Cooking Club on Tuesday and wanted to see if anyone else had had any experience with the recipe.

    My Cooking Club has been using Savor the Moment for the past year, and we have really loved it. We chose it, in fact, upon the recommendation of one of my blog readers.

    I just wrote a post with pictures and menus from the past year when we've been cooking from Savor the Moment. Since you're in the JLBR and a fan of the cookbook, you might enjoy seeing them:

    I'm looking forward to perusing your blog and seeing which other recipes from STM you recommend. And I'm very excited about preparing and serving the Praline Bananas Foster on Tuesday (and like you, I plan to nix the lowfat ingredients in favor of full-fat ones!).


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