Pizza de Banana e Canela AND Down To Do

Posted by

The narrator of The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao asked/stated (I’m paraphrasing slightly), “What is it about dictators and writers anyway? … Like after all recognizes like…

Last night, the Universe brought like together in downtown Durham. Into a circle. Visioning. Visioning visionaries. Envisioning big. DOWN TO DO. Pushing boundaries. Dreaming. Realistic optimism. Healthily skeptical. Why solve a problem within the confines of what has already been done, within the mold of what has already been said, within the embrace of what has already been tried? You don’t. As Nana said today, “You Innovate.” Create a new space. Collectively. Passionately. Like water for chocolatey.

The details of the meeting are neither here nor there in terms of the present post. But soon enough, I’ll share. For now, I’ll impart a recipe for what I brought to the circle: pizza de banana e canela.


This pizza was inspired by–surprise, surprise– Brazil. Sigh. Sometimes in pizza form with catupiri, other times in sandwiches with queijo minas–the pairing of banana sweetness with cheese, is just, good. I couldn’t find either cheese in Chapel Hill or in Durham, so I improvised. I used a semi-soft Wisconsin cheddar with cranberries. I also made some other Tiffany-esque changes by including nuts for texture and a whole wheat crust for some more nutrition.

When I got to the circle, I announced the pizza and got some blank stares.

I don’t even know what banana pizza is!
Banana and cheese? Ahhhhhhhhhh, I don’t know about that one.

By the end of the night, I had received two, “This pizza is the BOMB!“s and folks were fighting over the last slice (which was eventually cut into thirds).

The take home of this little story? Don’t knock it until you try it.

Two caveats. 1: I was running late and rushing, so the pictures aren’t the best. SORRY! and 2: The pizza is admittedly monochromatic, which is totally not my style, BUT the taste more than makes up for it. Beside, monochromatism can be beautiful sometimes … like wearing all white at a New Years festival de Yemanja.


Pizza de Banana e Canela

1 store bought whole wheat pizza dough (or make your own)
bench flour
2 bananas
1/4 cup macadamia nuts
4-6 oz cheese (catupiri is best…)
4-6 oz sweetened condensed milk

*Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
*Preheat a cookie sheet (or pizza stone) in the oven while you make the pizza
*Take dough out of fridge 20 minutes before you want to make the pizza
*Chop nuts; slice/shred cheese

*Stretch dough into a circle, using bench flour to prevent sticking to your counter

*Bake the dough for 4 minutes

*Take the dough out, add 3/4 of cheese.

*Add bananas

*Add cinnamon
*Add nuts

*Add remaining cheese
*Bake 8-10 minutes
*After the pizza is fully baked, drizzle sweetened condensed milk and sprinkle with cinnamon

Written by

Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DC’s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantra—love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!


  1. oh man! i want to try this really bad…. (heading to the grocery store sometime today..)

  2. Where can i get that cheese and what is bench flour? I've never heard or seen it.

  3. Hi Patricia,

    I got the cheese from Whole Foods (ask the cheese woman/man). Bench flour is just flour you put down on the counter before you stretch or roll dough. Let me know how the pizza turns out!!!

  4. Oh Patricia, did you mean catupiry? That, you have to get from a Brazilian grocery store (which I haven't been able to find in the Triangle).