A popular order at Ice Cream shops around the world, the banana split combines both fruit and ice cream for a delicious dessert treat.
A Pennsylvanian Dish
Though the banana split has become popular throughout the United States and in many places worldwide, the frozen dessert had humble beginnings.
David Evans Strickler is credited as being the inventor of the dish. At 23-year-sold, he was an apprentice pharmacist at Tassel Pharmacy in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Strickler spent his time coming up with different sundaes at the store’s popular soda fountain.
On one fateful day in 1904, he came up with the banana ice cream sundae, which he then sold for twice the cost of other sundaes – 10 cents.
Even though it cost more, the treat caught on pretty quickly with students at Saint Vincent College, who spread the news.
By 1907, the recipe for the banana split included:
- Two scoops of ice cream
- A banana split lengthwise
- A spoonful of whipped cream
- Chopped nuts and mixed fruits
- A maraschino cherry to top things off
The sundae became so popular that it allowed Strickler to become wealthy enough to purchase the pharmacy altogether.
The city of Latrobe, Pennsylvania, still celebrates being the birthplace of the banana split. Recognized as such by the National Ice Cream Retailers Association (NICRA), the city holds an annual “Great Banana Split Celebration” each August.
The Banana Split In Paris
Looking for somewhere in Paris to sink your teeth into a banana split?
These two locations are great places to stop for the dessert:
- La Crème de Paris, an ice cream and frozen yogurt shop located at 4 rue faubourg, Montmartre
- Crêperie Elo, located at 7 rue Saint-Antoine, Bastille
An Adaptable Dessert
Something pretty special about the banana split is its ability to be transformed into several different deserts. In fact, one such dessert is the banana split pie, created in 1952 by 16-year-old Holdredge, Nebraska resident Janet Winquest.
Other transformations of the banana split that take it from sundae to something else include:
- The banana split cookie
- Banana split crepes
- Banana split cake
Each recipe takes aspects of the original banana split and works them into all-new, totally delicious forms.
If you want to make your very own banana split, there are tons of recipes out there to help you get on your way!
Looking for a great example? This super-simple 15-minute recipe for the perfect banana split is an awesome place to start!
Changing Things Up
Of course, one of the great things about the banana split is the fact that you can change up the recipe to your liking.
For a little variation on the classic banana split, try:
- Adding different kinds of mixed or chopped fruits to your sundae to change up the flavor profile.
- Use fried bananas for a little bit of textured pop.
- Try different kinds of ice cream with your banana split, and experiment with which ones you like the best!
An Ice Cream Classic
Whether you’re trying a banana split for the first time or the hundredth, chances are you’ll be in love with this delicious dessert!