Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Turon (Banana Spring Rolls)

Turon (banana spring rolls) would have to be my all-time favourite Filipino dessert. I literally had it everyday during a recent trip to the Philippines (thanks to Mr J). At the end of it I still wanted more.

Making turon is a simple enough process. You wrap slices of banana in spring roll wrappers. You then fry them in medium hot oil. There’s really nothing to it.

But what makes this such a unique dessert is the type of banana used. Saba bananas (Musa x paradisiaca) is not that uncommon in Australia. You can get packs of par-boiled frozen sabas from your neighbourhood Filipino food purveyor. There you’ll also find jars of sweetened sliced saba used for halo-halo (mixed fruit/bean iced dessert). Fresh saba though is seasonal and very rare. You have to be in the know to get a hold of them as I’ve never seen them sold in major Asian shops. We get ours from Mom who sources hers from a tiny shop east of Brisbane. Apparently, their flown in from Darwin when in season.

In a lot of recipes I’ve read plantains are always recommended as a substitute. I’ve never actually used plantains so I can’t really tell you if it’s any good. You might still be better off using the frozen variety for a more authentic taste.

Saba is starchier and less sweet than other bananas. Brown sugar is commonly added for sweetness and texture as it also coats the dessert with crunchy toffee.

Slivers of jackfruit are also added as its taste complements that of the saba banana.

Turon (Banana Spring Rolls)
6 Saba bananas (halved or quartered lengthwise)
Spring roll wrappers
Oil for frying
Brown sugar (optional)
Slivers of jackfruit (optional)

There are several ways you can add sugar to this dish. You either mix the sugar and the sliced bananas together or sprinkle them before wrapping. You also melt sugar in oil halfway through or after you’ve fried the banana spring rolls.

1. Heat up lots of oil for frying. Keep this at medium level.
2. Wrap the (sugared) bananas and jackfruit (optional) in spring roll wrappers.
3. Fry them.
4. Add some brown sugar to the oil (half-way through the cooking process or after cooking the spring rolls). You then spread this melted sugar onto the spring rolls to create that crunchy toffee coat.


Joelen said...

Turon is one of my all time fave desserts - looks delish and now I want to go find some fresh saba!

The Beancounter said...

wow... our saba season i think is not till much later pa...

Clare said...

Glad I found your site, curious to know what banana/plantain turon is, so will zip an amail to the guys at DPI tomorrow to find out...if I do I'll let you know!

I'm a fellow QLD food blogger up north in Cairns, love you to check out my blog Tropical Cuisine: Cooking in Clare's Kitchen and also interested in whether you have any links to other people doing food blogs in tropical Australia?



The Beancounter said...

Hello there Clare! Welcome to my site! and please do let me know...

I follow about 3 other blogs but they're all NSW based... ound them through foodbuzz.com...

Simon Food Favourites
Souvlaki for the Soul
Grab Your Fork

and here's a link to a pretty comprehensice list of resources for food bloggers:


Marvin said...

Great looking turon! I also have never used plantains, as a substitute, but saba is fairly easy to fine where I am. I might try plantains once, just to see if they're any good.

The Beancounter said...

Thanks for droppng by Marvin!

I'll wait for that post on plantains...

Tangled Noodle said...

I usually have to use plantains here in Minnesota - saba is not common and I don't want to use the typical 'Chiquita' (or whatever it's called) bananas that are found all over. Turon was one of the first recipes I posted on my blog and it's such a favorite! Now you've reminded me that I haven't had any for ages . . .

The Beancounter said...

I'll check out that post TN!