Chinese Fried Toffee Bananas

Hong Kong

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Lavender & Lovage: A Culinary Notebook of Memories & Recipes From Home & Abroad

Lavender & Lovage

By Karen Burns-Booth

Published 2019

  • About

A very naughty and calorific dessert that I may treat myself to once a year. Beloved of all Chinese restaurants and takeaways, I first enjoyed a paper cone filled with these deep-fried treats in Hong King during my teens. I was under strict instructions not to eat any street food as Mum was worried about “dirty water” but when I visited my best friend for the weekend, that all fell by the wayside as we meandered through the street food markets in Kowloon. We watched as the hawker dexterously peeled, chopped and fried the bananas in batter before dipping them into a toffee sauce and scattering sesame seeds over the top, and they were utter illegal bliss.


  • 50 g self-raising flour
  • 25 g cornflour, plus extra for dusting
  • 90 ml cold water
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 2 bananas, thickly sliced diagonally
  • 120 g white sugar
  • Sesame seeds, for sprinkling


  1. Make the batter: Whisk together the self-raising flour and cornflour and add the water, mix until smooth. Stir in 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil.
  2. Fill a wok or deep frying pan with of vegetable oil and heat to 190°C. Toss the banana slices in the extra cornflour to lightly coat. Using a wooden skewer, dip each banana slice in the batter and cook them in the hot oil, in batches, until golden and crisp. Drain them on a paper towel.
  3. Place the sugar in a large, heavy-based frying pan over medium heat and cook, shaking the pan occasionally, until a caramel forms. Remove from the heat, then working quickly and one at a time, add the fried bananas to the caramel, turn to coat and sprinkle with sesame seeds.