Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Banana Pudding

This recipe is based on one from Sheila Lukins' USA Cookbook. I like to use chocolate cookies instead of Nilla wafers because I think it classes things up a bit, and I also use whipped cream instead of merengue on top because, well, whipped cream is great on everything.

1 3/4 C sugar + about one Tbs for the whipped cream
1/4 C all-purpose flour
2 Tbs cornstarch
5 C milk
8 large egg yolks (you can freeze the whites to use later)
2 Tbs unsalted butter
Vanilla extract
12 oz chocolate cookies (I like to use Newman's Own Alphabet cookies, but any oreo-without-cream style cookie would work)
8 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
Whipping cream

Scald the milk in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and whisk as you add the sugar, flour, cornstarch, and a pinch of salt. Continue whisking until smooth.

Place the mixture over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly, until it starts to thicken (dip a spoon in and then run your finger across the back- if it leaves a trail it is thick enough), about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the egg yolks, one at a time, until blended.

Return the saucepan to low heat and cook until very thick, aboud 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and add the butter and vanilla. Set aside.

Line the bottom of a glass bowl or trifle dish with hald the cookies. Add a layer of half the banana slices. Pour half the custard on top, and then follow with another layer of cookies, a layer of bananas, and the rest of the custard.

Whip the cream with a bit of sugar and a drop of vanilla. I like to do this in my Cuisinart, but you can easily use a blender or just a whisk and a bowl. Spread the whipped cream over the top of the pudding, and then sprinkle with the fine cookie crumbs that are left in the bottom of the package. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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