When Life Gives You Too Many Bananas, Make Bananamon

Bananas and cookies make this ice cream old-fashioned delicious.

Bananas and cookies make this ice cream old-fashioned delicious.



That’s bananas plus cinnamon in a wonderfully homey ice cream.

With crumbled Nilla Wafers for added enticement.

It’s a creation from Ample Hills Creamery in Brooklyn.

I received a review copy of its “Ample Hills Creamery: Secrets and Stories from Brooklyn’s Favorite Ice Cream Shop” (Stewart, Tabori & Chang; 2014) cookbook last year. Ice cream shop owners Brian Smith, a screenwriter, and Jackie Cuscuna, an alternative high school teacher, opened their first shop in 2011, followed by a second one in 2014. The shops’ name was inspired by a poem by Walt Whitman, “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry.”


The cookbook is full of fun and inventive ice cream flavors to make including, “The Munchies” (pretzel ice cream with mix-ins of Ritz crackers, mini pretzels, potato chips and M&Ms), “Cotton Candy” (made with cotton candy flavor extract and blue food coloring), and “Sunday Brunch” (maple cinnamon ice cream with baked french toast spooned into it).

With the recent heat wave, I couldn’t help but have ice cream on my mind. “Bananamon” appealed because of its nostalgic bent. A milky, creamy spoonful that tastes of vanilla, cinnamon, banana and old-time cookies — what’s not to like, right?

What’s even better — especially when it’s so hot outside — there are no eggs in it, so you don’t have to cook a custard on the stovetop to make it. Instead, everything gets blitzed in a blender in seconds.

You don’t even have to chill the mixture before spinning it in an ice cream maker. Just note that it may take twice as much time to spin, though, as a result.

The book says that the recipes make about a quart of ice cream. I found that this one made considerably more — probably about 1 1/3 quarts.

But there’s nothing wrong with finding yourself with more ice cream than expected. Especially when it’s one that is sure to bring out the child in all of us.

Just try to resist. I dare ya.

Just try to resist. I dare ya.


(Makes about 1 1/3 quarts)

1 1/2 cups whole milk

3/4 cup skim milk powder

3/4 cup organic cane sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 pound ripe, peeled fresh bananas

2 cups heavy cream

About 25 vanilla wafers from a 12-ounce box

Make the banana ice cream: In a blender, combine milk, skim milk powder, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and bananas and blend until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add the cream. Stir until combined.

Transfer the base to an ice cream maker and churn it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Break the vanilla wafer cookies into quarters. Transfer the ice cream to a storage container, gently folding in the cookie pieces as you do. Serve immediately or harden in your freezer for 8 to 12 hours for a more scoopable ice cream.

From “Ample Hills Creamery” by Brian Smith and Jackie Cuscuna with Lauren Kaelin


More Frozen Fun: “Here’s Your Damn Strawberry Ice Cream” from Humphry Slocombe


And: Peanut Butter Dream Ice Cream Sandwiches


And: Greek Yogurt Sorbet


And: Blueberry Ice Cream

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