Fried bananas, or Chuoi Chien, is a popular street food in Vietnam. It's made from small and short bananas known as Chuoi Xiem or Chuoi Su in Vietnam, or Ladyfinger Bananas here in the States. They have a very thin skin, and they get incredibly sweet when ripe. For the Vietnamese fried bananas, the bananas are sliced thin, dipped into a rice and/or wheat flour batter then deep fried. The bananas are served with a drizzle of coconut milk.
In the below recipe, I did a take on this traditional Vietnamese snack. I wrapped the bananas into spring roll wrappers, making these more like fried spring roll or egg roll than the traditional fritter. Once deep fried, I drizzled the bananas with a coconut caramel sauce and topped them with toasted shredded coconut.
The bananas were crispy on the outside, and warm and sweet on the inside. The caramel sauce and toasted shredded coconut transformed this traditional Vietnamese snack food into a beautiful and decadent dessert.
Fried Banana Spring Roll with Coconut Caramel Sauce Recipe (Chuoi Chien)
4 regular bananas (cut into halves) or 8 Ladyfinger bananas
8 large spring roll wrappers
1/2 cup shredded coconut (if unsweetened, mix with 1 teaspoon granulated sugar)
1 egg yolk (mix with a fork in a bowl)
Vegetable oil for deep frying
Coconut Caramel Sauce
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Wrap the bananas in spring roll wrappers. Position the banana in one corner of the wrapper. Slowly roll up and fold in the side corners. Continue to roll the banana up. Wet the end corner with the egg yolk mixture to seal.
In a small sauce pan on medium high heat, add the sugar. Let the sugar melt and caramelize until golden brown. Add the coconut milk and salt. Stir until combined. Let the sauce simmer for 1-2 minutes on low heat. Add the butter and mix until combined. Turn off the heat and allow the sauce to cool to thicken.
In a small frying pan, toast the shredded coconut until golden brown. Set aside.
In a medium size pot, heat vegetable oil to 350 degree Fahrenheit. Add the wrapped bananas and deep fry on each side for about one and a half minute.
Remove the bananas and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess oil.
To assemble, cut the banana in half and transfer to a plate. Drizzle a little coconut caramel sauce and top with toasted shredded coconuts.