These Banana Spring Rolls or Lumpia – Turon – are the best way to use up all your ripe Bananas. Sliced bananas are dusted with sugar then wrapped in spring roll wrappers with slices of jackfruit or other fillings then fried until golden brown and crispy. Turon, as it is called locally, is a hugely popular snack or street food in the Philippines! These caramelized bananas are the best and maybe served with ice cream, too!
When I was in the Philippines, a couple of years ago in March 2018, my sweet aunties (mom’s younger sisters) came over for a quick visit. They knew I was back from the US and wanted to see me and my mom, of course. It was so lovely to see them again after so many years. It was a wonderful mini-reunion.
They were so sweet because they came and brought lunch with them. We told them our maid was away for the Easter holiday and no one was available to prepare food. I know, I know you’re probably thinking – surely, Abigail you can cook, right? Yes, that’s true! After all, I am a blogger and a food blogger at that!
Well, the cooking skill wasn’t the issue. Since I had just recently arrived from the US, my sleeping pattern was upside down because of the time zone changes and my body was still adjusting to the tropical heat – March is summertime in Southeast Asia and hot, hot, hot! So, I was pretty useless and totally jetlagged for several days including the day they visited.
I was unwell and lightheaded and couldn’t function properly and all my body wanted to do was sleep. Thankfully, my 80-year-old mother still managed to reheat some of the food that was prepared for us in advance before our help left otherwise we would have starved! Good thing, Jollibee (Filipino version of McDonalds), was nearby too so we went there for breakfast for a few days! Ha.
Anyway, I told my aunties that I will try to make some dessert for them since they already brought the main dishes. Thankfully, it’s a local delicacy that’s so easy to prepare, and even when I wasn’t feeling 100% I still managed to cut up the ingredients.
Auntie Tessie volunteered to fry them – the only semi-hard part of the prep. And it came out delicious and when I go back to the states I will certainly prepare this for my family. I’ve made a batch this summer and brought it to a friend’s house when we were invited for dinner. Everyone loved it!
I am talking about this favorite snack/dessert/streetfood in the Philippines called “Turon” or caramelized Banana Spring Rolls (or simply Banana Lumpia). Ripe burro or cardaba bananas (locally known as Saba) are rolled in raw sugar and then wrapped in spring roll wrappers with pieces of jackfruit then rolled again in sugar and then fried until golden brown. Doesn’t that sound delicious already?
Voila – deliciously sweet caramelized bananas that are so good, they’re addictive!
INGREDIENTS TO MAKE TURON
- Saba Bananas – this is a Filipino (Southeast Asian) sweet cooking banana and is essential to many dishes in the Philippines. It can be used even for savory dishes like Pochero, a Filipino beef or pork stew. It lends a lemony sweetness to any dish and is perfect to use for making any dessert that requires bananas!
If you don’t have or cannot find Saba bananas (available at some Asian/Filipino stores and may even be bought frozen – yay!) you can use regular ripe bananas or even plantains. Simply slice them in half lengthwise to fit a spring roll wrapper perfectly.
- Brown Sugar – for dusting or sprinkling
- Lumpia or Spring Roll Wrappers – get the paper-thin variety so they’re extra crispy when fried. These wrappers can be found in any Asian store. Try to find one that states Lumpia on the label, if possible.
- Jackfruit – ripe and sliced in thin strips. This is optional though it’s traditionally added when we make it at home. You can purchase this bottled or canned. Simply drain well before slicing. Below is a photo of fresh ripe jackfruit or langka. It smells heavenly!
- Cooking Oil – naturally for frying.
Not too many ingredients, right? It’s quite fun to wrap these bananas so you can make this a bonding moment with your family, too!
How to Make Turon (Banana Lumpia or Banana Spring Rolls)
These Banana Spring Rolls or Lumpia - Turon - are the best way to use up all your ripe Bananas. Sliced bananas are dusted with sugar then wrapped in spring roll wrappers with slices of jackfruit or other fillings then fried until golden brown and crispy. Turon as it is called locally is a hugely popular snack or street food in the Philippines! These caramelized bananas are the best and maybe served with ice cream, too!
- 6 Saba or regular bananas,
- 1 cup brown Sugar, or as needed
- 1 cup or bottle jackfruit, sliced into thin strips
- 12 lumpia or spring roll wrappers, (use paper thin rolls)
- 1 1/2 cups cooking oil, or as needed
Peel the bananas and slice them in half lengthwise. You should have about 12.
Roll each slice of banana in sugar. Place one slice banana across the corner of a thin spring roll wrapper. Add a few thin strips of sliced jackfruit on top. If you wish, you may sprinkle a little more brown sugar on top. Roll the wrapper from the corner (where the banana is) to the center. Tuck the sides of the wrapper to seal then continue rolling until you reach the top edge. Use water or egg wash to seal the top. Repeat until all the banana and jackfruit are used up.
Heat the oil to medium (not too hot or the wrapper may brown too quick without fully cooking the bananas). Once the oil is hot and just before frying roll each wrapped banana in some sugar then immediately add to the fryer and cook until golden brown and crispy about 3-4 minutes. The extra sugar will cause the wrapper to caramelize on the outside making it extra yummy! Place each fried banana roll on paper towels to absorb any excess oil. Enjoy while still warm and crispy!
You may serve this with ice cream or storebought or homemade caramel sauce.
Note: You can buy bottled jackfruit in syrup. Just drain and dry well before using it.