Pieday: Banana Cream at Letti's Cakes, Etc. | Rock Candy

Pieday: Banana Cream at Letti's Cakes, Etc.

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MELLOW YELLOW:  Banana cream pie from Lettis
My North Little Rock readers have been on me for some time to try out the sweet delights over at Letti’s Cakes Etc. on JFK. It always seems like when I’m in the neighborhood I’ve just eaten, so I’ve had to pass.

I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me earlier to get something to go, ya know? So last week I did just that, running by during the lunch hour to pick up some cupcakes and pie.

I’ve heard rumors about how good that banana cream pie is. Now, I’m not much for banana cream, though I have delighted in the version offered at Chip’s Barbecue. Banana cream seems like it’s missing something, like chocolate and cherries and caramel sauce. Yeah, I guess when I eat a banana cream pie I’m wanting a banana split.

But I didn’t get that sensation with Letti’s banana cream. I went in and asked if it was available, and out came this virgin uncut pie, creamy-topped with dried banana slices dotting the cream. It smelled heavenly.

Thing is, it was sliced for me on top of the cupcake case, and the cupcakes looked ever so good. I had to pick up a couple of cupcakes as well. You know, research.

I noticed while I was checking out that Letti’s also serves soup and sandwich lunches. Who knew? Apparently not I.

So I get to the car with two small boxes, one containing the two cupcakes I had purchased and one with the slice of banana cream pie. I took my photos, carefully tucked the boxes in and went on my way.

Thing is, though I’d eaten a few hours before, I was still hungry, and as I headed to the radio station to do my spot I kept thinking about that pie. I could smell it. It was sweet and a little pungent. I had planned to drop my sweets off at the house to spend a little refrigerator time so I might try them later on. But…

Well, the honest truth. The banana cream pie did not make it home. I ended up pulling over into a post office parking lot, pulling out an emergency fork (I keep disposables just for this reason) and opened that box. I didn’t even think about taking another photo, I just wanted that pie.

And what a nice pie. The banana cream was a very deep yellow, with sweet pudding-like notes throughout. The dried banana slices really didn’t add a whole lot to it except crunch, but they were far better than the sometimes slimy “fresh” banana slices I’ve had on other pies. The nice loose-packed graham cracker crust was just enough for the bottom, not too thick and not too cinnamon-y. I found myself licking my fingers. It was a good pie.

Now, this is the part where I should just wrap up the review and not go on. I mean, I’ve already revealed my shame about tackling that pie. I ended up not making it home before the radio show, and when I was done a couple of hours later I had mucho errands to run — including picking up my child and taking her elsewhere. I realized I was still three or four hours from dinner and I was hungry again.

Geez, I’ve turned into some sort of glutton! Or perhaps it was the scent of those cupcakes, which had melted just a little in the sunlight while waiting for me in the vehicle.

I had to try one. So as I sat at a stoplight trying to get home I plucked out that pistachio cupcake — pistachio! Wow! — and bit in. It was very light, just subtly flavored with the nut, and it was GREEN. Green green green. It was kinda funny. I checked the rearview mirror to make sure my tongue wasn’t also green. Yay, it wasn’t.

I checked my shirt for crumbs before picking Hunter up. And that should have been the end of that, no? No, of course not. We got through our errands and got home for the evening, and as I’m getting all our stuff out of the vehicle for the day Hunter tells me quite clearly, “Momma, I want something sweet.”

“Um, okay, strawberries?”

“No.”

“Chocolate?”

“You have a cupcake.”

I just looked at her for a moment. How did she know that? How in the world did she know I had a cupcake in the car? So in the end, I just got a little bit of a taste of the red velvet cupcake I’d brought home. And she ended up with cream cheese frosting on her nose.

Now, Letti’s cupcakes are good, I’ll give you that. But that banana cream pie? I’ve been thinking about it, and I may have to go back over there and get a whole one before company comes Tuesday night. It’s been a long time since I had such a good banana cream pie. I think I’ll do that. Maybe. Oh, heavens, what if I ate THAT in the car?

You’ll find Letti’s Cakes Etc. at 3700 North JFK in North Little Rock. The place is open every day except Sunday starting at 10 a.m. (501) 771-2837 or check out the Facebook fan page.

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