Our Sunday nights have been a little brighter these past two weeks with the return of Downton Abbey. Mike and I were late to the game with this show and last winter we spent our evenings catching-up (binging, would actually be more accurate) on the first two seasons, complete with gin and tonics in hand. We were both even a little depressed for a few days once we finished season two - such a long wait ahead of us! The third season has already been so much fun to watch, with plenty of drama, zippy one-liners, and Mary's wedding. And can we talk about poor Edith? I couldn't stop crying for her last week! What a nightmare!
As much fun as the drama is upstairs, I am equally, if not more so, drawn to the personalities of those downstairs, which is probably because I have no traceable line of royalty in my English ancestors (I'll continue to hold out hope for the Scottish side). Unlike the formal, massive dinner table upstairs, every time they show the servants eating dinner or enjoying a cup of tea, I just want to pull up a chair and sit around their long communal table. And I imagine Banoffee Pie, an old English dessert layered with gooey toffee, ripe banana slices, and whipped cream, would be something happily shared among the servants on a rainy evening with a big pot of tea.
Adapted from Gail Simmons for My Last Supper
Makes 1 9-inch pie
This recipe calls for making your own toffee, but you can easily substitute a good-quality store bought version to reduce the preparation time. Better yet, make your own dulce de leche on a lazy afternoon and keep the cans stocked so you can whip this dessert up on even the shortest of notice.
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
8 ounces chocolate wafer cookies, broken into pieces
1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch of table salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
2 large bananas
1 pint heavy cream