This simple, delicious caramelized saba banana is often eaten as dessert or snack or as topping to ice cream. In Filipino we call this minatamis na saging; It is eaten as is or as one of the many sweet ingredients in halo-halo or serve with shaved ice and milk (banana con hielo).
When I was in grade school I often have this in a stick (bamboo skewer), like a banana-Q, we call it solbot. In highschool, on hot humid days, I would have a serving or two of banana con hielo with my friends before going home.
Saba is a type of plantain, a relative of banana that you need to cook first before you can eat it. To make it easier for me to explain what a saba banana is, I have a picture here (or you can go here):
that’s what a saba banana look like with peel, without the peel and the cross section.
I don’t know if theres’ truth to this or just an old wives tale but my mother believes in it: we were always told not to eat this raw as it will make our tummies hurt. But when my mom wasn’t looking I did pop a few slices of this in my mouth (well, you know how kids are when told that they can’t have something.. I wasn’t an exception). I didn’t have a stomach ache but now that I have my own kids, whether it’s true or not, I don’t allow them to have these raw as well 😉
Here’s how to make this delicious caramelized banana:
make the caramel
add banana slices..cook until tender
serve plain or with milk or for topping other desserts like ice cream or puddings..
RECIPE FOR SABA BANANA CARAMEL
about 6 pieces saba bananas, sliced diagonally into 3 or 4
3/4 cup brown sugar (you may use regular sugar if you want)
3/4 cupwater or coconut milk (I like coconut milk better)
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
note: if you intend to eat it with ice cream or shaved ice, use less bananas or make more caramel to have more sauce. If you want to eat it plain, it’s best to have the caramel thick and clinging to the bananas.
In a saucepan or deep saute pan on medium heat put water or coconut milk and sugar, stir until sugar dissolves. Stir in salt and vanilla. Increase heat to high and bring the caramel to a boil without stirring. When it turns amber in color, add the banana slices and cook until tender. If you find that the caramel is too thick and your bananas aren’t quite cooked yet, you may add little water or coconut milk and simmer and stir gently until it’s cooked.
That’s it. Make sure you cool it to room temperature if you are going to eat it plain.
Thanks for reading and Have a nice day! 🙂
Saba Banana Caramel
- ABOUT 6 PIECES SABA BANANAS SLICED DIAGONALLY INTO 3 OR 4
- 3/4 CUP Brown Sugar YOU MAY USE REGULAR SUGAR IF YOU WANT
- 3/4 CUPWATER OR COCONUT MILK I LIKE COCONUT MILK BETTER
- PINCH OF SALT
- 1 TEASPOON VANILLA EXTRACT OPTIONAL
- NOTE: IF YOU INTEND TO EAT IT WITH ICE CREAM OR SHAVED ICE USE LESS BANANAS OR MAKE MORE CARAMEL TO HAVE MORE SAUCE. IF YOU WANT TO EAT IT PLAIN, IT’S BEST TO HAVE THE CARAMEL THICK AND CLINGING TO THE BANANAS.
- IN A SAUCEPAN OR DEEP SAUTE PAN ON MEDIUM HEAT PUT WATER OR COCONUT MILK AND SUGAR, STIR UNTIL SUGAR DISSOLVES. STIR IN SALT AND VANILLA. INCREASE HEAT TO HIGH AND BRING THE CARAMEL TO A BOIL WITHOUT STIRRING. WHEN IT TURNS AMBER IN COLOR, ADD THE BANANA SLICES AND COOK UNTIL TENDER. IF YOU FIND THAT THE CARAMEL IS TOO THICK AND YOUR BANANAS AREN’T QUITE COOKED YET, YOU MAY ADD LITTLE WATER OR COCONUT MILK AND SIMMER AND STIR GENTLY UNTIL IT’S COOKED.
- THAT’S IT. MAKE SURE YOU COOL IT TO ROOM TEMPERATURE IF YOU ARE GOING TO EAT IT PLAIN.