Caramelized Banana Pudding Recipe – A Childhood Favorite Upgraded

October 24, 2011 in Desserts

Banana Pudding 1865x1865

I have the most amazing husband on the planet earth. I have been treated like a queen every single day of my 34 year (and counting) honeymoon.

So, you will understand when I tell you that there is no better reason to cook fabulous food than to make Jim smile. The best thing about Jim as a sounding board/critic is that he loves me enough to be honest. Truly Honest. “This-dish-stinks” kind of honest.

Jim closer

So, when he tasted the banana pudding dish that I made this weekend, it was a great moment  for me when he closed his eyes, smiled and said “This is heaven.”
Classic banana pudding, an Americanized banana trifle recipe popular in the 1950s and 1960s, is layers of vanilla wafers, pudding, whipped cream and bananas. Jim ate this dish along with the rest of Americans as a kid and this recipe topped his food memory. The secret, I’m convinced, is the homemade pudding, and not using the store-bought box. It is truly write-home-about remarkable.

I was given the blog A Spoonful of Thyme as part of this month’s Secret Recipe Club challenge. California blogger Kate shared a Roasted Banana Pudding recipe and I made her recipe to a “T” except I caramelized the banana slices with a little butter and brown sugar in a hot skillet instead of roasting them. Kate’s pudding was fresh and flavorful and light – delightful. Thanks, Kate, for a recipe that I memorized and will use again and again for dessert deliciousness!

– posted by Donna

CARAMELIZED BANANA PUDDING

Preheat oven to 350°
  • 5 ripe unpeeled medium bananas (about 2 pounds)
  • 2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
  • 2/3 cup sugar, divided
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 (12-ounce) container frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed and divided (or, whip your own cream)
  • 45 vanilla wafers, divided
  • Place bananas on a jelly-roll pan covered with parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove 3 bananas; cool completely. Peel and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Bake the remaining 2 bananas at 350° for an additional 20 minutes. Carefully peel and place the 2 bananas in a small bowl, and mash with a fork until smooth.
  • Combine milk and 1/3 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer (do not boil).
  • Combine remaining 1/3 cup sugar, cornstarch, salt, and eggs in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk. Gradually add hot milk mixture to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan. Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 3 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add mashed bananas, butter, and vanilla, stirring until butter melts. Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until mixture comes to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Fold half of whipped topping into pudding.
  • Spread 1 cup custard evenly over the bottom of an 11 x 7-inch baking dish. Top with 20 vanilla wafers and half of the banana slices. Spoon half of remaining custard over banana. Repeat procedure with 20 wafers, banana slices, and custard. Spread remaining half of whipped topping evenly over top. Crush remaining 5 wafers; sprinkle over top. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.
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