A Talamo Slush Credit: Courtesy of Sandy Oliver

When those bananas begin their slide into super ripeness, heave them into the freezer. Then, when you really need a semi-frozen dessert or mid-afternoon pick-me-up, you can make this quick and easy Talamo Slush.

My neighbor Barbara Talamo whipped this up for an informal supper dessert a while back (pre-pandemic) and I jotted it down as a good idea to share with Taste Buds readers.

From time to time here, we offer a non-recipe recipe, a kind of exploration of possibilities for you to try out, and this one from Barbara is a prime example.

It comes from the family of smoothie recipes that call for pureed fruits to which you can add milk or milk substitutes. (Some people include green stuff like spinach, kale or chard in smoothies, especially breakfast ones. This is a dessert, so no vegetables are required.)

The result ranges from sherbet to smoothie. Barbara says its texture should be between “spoonable and slurpable.” When I asked her for the recipe this is what she wrote:

“It’s not really a recipe. I slice up one or two frozen bananas and throw some of it into a blender with enough milk or almond milk to allow it to puree. I keep at it with more banana and liquid until it is mostly smooth. Then I add berries, e.g. straw-, rasp- and/or blue- or blackberries enough to give it a lot of color when pureed. Along with the berries, I add a little sweetener, to taste. The berries can be fresh or frozen. Sweetener can be a couple of teaspoons of sugar or honey or maple syrup. Add the liquid as needed to permit pureeing, but keeping it thick. It is fun to serve it in an old-fashioned sundae-type glass. Yum.”

Emphasis on the yum.

Now, when it comes to freezing bananas, you’ll want to peel and wrap them first. Don’t worry if they turn brown in the freezer. It’s not a problem.

We are deep into berry season, so use any berry you like. Then you can turn to the frozen ones. I see no reason not to try soft stone fruits like peaches, plums or nectarines as well. If you want to work with melons, I’d recommend avoiding the milk or, because of how juicy most melons are, waiting to add milk until you have finished adding all the fruit to the bananas.

This slush is great for the lactose intolerant and vegans because you can employ almond, macadamia, oat or coconut milk, or use lactose free milk. If you are avoiding sugar these days, then Barbara’s suggestion of maple syrup or honey is spot on.

If you make this dessert ahead of meal time, you can keep it in the freezer but remove it in time to soften up a little. If it freezes hard, you’ll find there are less desirable icy bits in it.

Slurp it, spoon it, and stick a cookie next to it. Fast and delicious. As Barbara says, “Yum.”

Talamo Slush

Yields 2-3 servings

2 overripe bananas frozen

1/4 – 1/2 cup milk, as needed

1-2 cups berries, fresh or frozen

1-2 teaspoons sugar, maple syrup or honey, more to taste

Slice the bananas and put half into a blender, adding 1/4 cup of milk.

Blend, gradually adding the rest of the banana, until smooth, and gradually more milk then add the fruit and the sweetener.

Garnish if desired with chopped nuts, fresh berries, or whipped cream.

Sandy Oliver, Taste Buds

Sandy Oliver Sandy is a freelance food writer with the column Taste Buds appearing weekly since 2006 in the Bangor Daily News, and regular columns in Maine Boats, Homes, and Harbors magazine and The Working...