As bizarre as it sounds, I’ve never had/ heard of banana pudding before. Essentially, the pudding is very, very similar to the pastry cream I made for cream puffs. This pudding then get layered with Nilla wafers and sliced banana. The rum I listed is optional, but I definitely think it brings the pudding to a whole new level. This recipe is adapted from Alton Brown’s Refrigerated Pudding Recipe.
YIELD: 1 7-cup round Pyrex container, plus enough extra for 1 whisky-glass.
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon.
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch.
- 2 eggs + 2 egg yolks.
- Pinch of salt
- 2 cups whole milk.
- 3 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks.
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3-4 medium-ripe bananas, cut into 1/4 inch slices.
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice, add to the bananas right after cutting to prevent browning.
- 2 tablespoons dark rum (I used Myer’s), optional but highly recommended.
- 1/3 – 1/2 box of Nilla wafers.
- 1/2 – 1 cup heavy whipping cream, depends on how much whipping cream you like.
- Combine the milk and 1/2 cup minus 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar in a sauce pan, bring to a simmer. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
- Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and salt in a mixing bowl. Add the cornstarch and whisk until combined. It will appear lumpy at first, just keep whisking.
- When the milk mixture comes to a full simmer, slowly whisk it into the egg mixture.
- Return the mixture into the sauce pan, bring it back to a simmer over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture reaches a pudding consistency, is glossy and thickened, and a few bubbles begin to burst on the surface.
- Off the heat, add the butter, vanilla, and rum if you’re using them. Whisk until blended. Strain through a sieve into a container, and press plastic wrap directly on the pudding to prevent a film from forming. Store in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours, or until chilled, before assembling.
- Assembling: Spread a bit pudding on the bottom. Layer wafers, then sliced bananas, then pudding. Repeat. I made 2 sets of layers like that for my Pyrex container. Press plastic wrap on the last layer’s pudding. Store in the fridge for at least a few hours, preferably overnight to give the wafers time to soak the pudding & banana flavors in.
- Before serving: put the heavy cream, mixing bowl, and mixer tips in the freezer for 5-10 mins. Beat the cream + 2 tablespoons sugar until stiff peaks. Spread on top of the pudding. Or obviously you can buy whipped cream from the store…
- Don’t get super ripe bananas, they’ll be too mushy.
- I’ve used both regular milk and lactaid, found no difference.
- I found giving the assembled pudding overnight time in the fridge really makes it better.