It's just so pretty.
This is my dessert from one of the nights out in New Orleans, where we ate at Herbsaint. Seriously. Amazing restaurant. My friend and I split the gnocchi with wild mushrooms, sage, and roasted garlic to start (and when I say "split", I really meant that I ate the entire thing happily because she does not like anything that uses butter, cream, oil, or any other fun ingredient. To say that eating out with her was a pain is an understatement. I am used to sharing my food with people who eat like me, and I didn't get to share! Because when she got fish, she got it PLAIN without any adornment, not even a fruit salsa. No, it's just scrapescrape all the tasty stuff off. And obviously she wouldn't taste any of my food because it was FRIED or HAD FLAVOUR or WHILE CARRYING THE PLATE, THE WAITER LOOKED ASKANCE AT BUTTER THEREBY DEEMING THE DISH INEDIBLE. But enough of that ranting). Then as an entrée, I ordered two more "small plates" - the fried frog legs and homemade spaghetti with a poached egg and pancetta. Elevated comfort food, that's what they were - chicken wings and spaghetti carbonara, they would have been known as in a different atmosphere. (Yes, frog legs look like wings, and taste like chicken except that they're just a tad chewier.)
But dessert. Dessert, which is the point of this post. Dessert, which so warranted a picture. That is a banana brown butter tart with fleur de sel caramel. I generally don't like bananas, having been forced as a child to eat one daily (along with two glasses of milk - hate milk now also. Also really really hate bananas ever since we had to make an artificial banana smelling chemical in chem class, whic is just putrid), but the waiter gave this dessert such raves that I had to get it, and was I glad I listened to him. (My friend, in case you're wondering, got the strawberry sorbet. While it was good, it was bleh, especially in a restaurant such as this, and definitely not worthy of a picture.) The banana flavour was not overpowering - there was just a hint of it. Enough to remind you that indeed, this was a banana tart, but not so much that it brought back bad memories involving bananas. I don't know what they did to the upper crust that made it delicate and crunchy, but wow. I am always a gigantic fan of fleur de sel caramel (which is drizzled upon the plate), and it counterbalanced the tart itself nicely. And the caramelised bananas? Almost enough to make me overcome my dislike of bananas, if it was possible to always get bananas served this way.
(By the way? Oh, no word yet from that last grad school. But it shouldn't come as any surprise when I tell you that they lost another girl's transcripts. Bunch of bumbling idiots. )