Anyone who is a fan of the mockumentry comedy "Arrested Development" knows the importance of the frozen dipped banana. If you are not familiar, tisk tisk, but now is your chance to indulge in the ultimate summer treat, a staple on boardwalks and at fairs nationwide.
If you have a guilty conscience, never fear for the following reasons: 1. They are smaller, bite sized versions of the original. 2. It's frozen fruit (nutritious and delicious)!
Just a couple of notes on working with chocolate before you begin. In order to achieve that snappy, crisp chocolate texture and smooth shiny finish at room temperature, I recommend buying candy-making chocolate and tempering it first. Tempering is a process of heating and cooling the chocolate carefully so that the cocoa butter and chocolate crystals even out and then can harden into an even shell.
However, for this recipe, we are freezing the end product, so tempering isn't necessary unless absolutely desired. Melting the chocolate and combining with vegetable shortening will do just the trick for a smooth dipped result. Additionally, feel free to branch out and experiment with toppings in addition to the coconut and chopped nuts.
Frozen Chocolate Banana Pops
1 package milk chocolate chips
1 Tbs. vegetable shortening
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup chopped nuts
1 package wooden skewers (4-6 inches)
1. Peel and cut the bananas into 1 1/12-2 inches pieces. Arrange the pieces to stand up on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Insert a skewer into the center of each piece. Place the tray into the freezer for 15 minutes to set.
2. Meanwhile, pour the chocolate chips and vegetable shortening into a heatproof glass or plastic bowl. Microwave until the chocolate is melted and smooth, removing the bowl every 20 seconds to stir (about a minute total). You don't want the chocolate to get too hot and seize.
3. Pour the coconut and chopped nuts into separate shallow dishes and set aside.
4. Remove the bananas from the freezer. Dip each one into the chocolate until coated. Allow excess to drip off, and immediately dip into coconut and or chopped nuts.
5. Place dipped bananas back onto parchment paper, and allow to freeze for at least one hour or until frozen through.
Jessica Roy is a private chef, specialty caterer and author of the foodie blog, Shiso Fresh.