Thursday, June 18, 2009

Banana Pudding

Okay, confession time. As much as I like to moan and groan about it to as many people as will listen, I have to admit... having two older brothers is an awesome experience. And even though I had my doubts when we were growing up of what kind of men they'd turn into... I mean, who wouldn't wonder that about a kid who sits on his little sister's head and farts on her when he's babysitting? Right? Or what about making their little sister hold a G.I. Joe up on a fence post so that they can shoot BBs at it? You gotta admit, that's a wee bit demented. I'm happy to report (thanks in large part to my parents, I suppose) they both grew into good men who I am proud to call my brothers.

Sure, we had our moments growing up... we fought, I cried, I tattled, we fought, I got them grounded, etc and that just describes one afternoon of my life growing up.

My oldest brother had his birthday a few weeks ago. And my mom pulled the "mom trump card" on that birthday and made his birthday cake for him. Now it's my other brother's turn and since my parents were out of town on his birthday, I took it upon myself to make him something that I knew he'd love.

Banana Pudding.

Now, honestly... banana pudding has never been my favorite. It's mushy. It's pudding-y. Blech. Not my cup of tea. But it is something that is very traditional in southern cuisine, so I was anxious to try my hand at a recipe.

I ended up adapting a couple of recipes into my own. It came together really easy and when I gave it to him... I went ahead and helped myself to a little piece... I mean... I couldn't let him eat a piece of it by himself, for heaven's sake. What kind of sister would I be?

I gotta say... homemade banana pudding is 15,000 times better then the jello banana pudding I've had so many times. Holy Crikies is this stuff good. Like... so good that I kept going back to sneak more. It is so sweet, so creamy, so banana-y. Soooo delicious.

Jackpot! Maybe next year, I'll make this banana pudding for my birthday!

Happy Birthday, Bro!
Banana Pudding
10 servings

This banana pudding is rich and super sweet. I'm obsessed with peanut butter and banana, so I used peanut butter sandwich cookies to line the entire bottom and to alternate on the top. If you like your banana pudding straight up traditional, just go for vanilla wafers all the way.

Also, I had some pudding left over... but, it's delicious with cookies dipped in it, etc.

1/3 cup all purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
Dash salt
2 ½ cups whole milk
1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 tsps vanilla extract
8 oz cream cheese, softened
12 oz of Cool Whip, thawed
3 cups sliced ripe bananas (5-6)
45 vanilla wafers
Package of Nutter Butters

Combine flour, sugar, and salt in medium saucepan. Gradually stir in milk and condensed milk and yolks, and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 8 minutes or until thickened.

Remove from heat; stir in vanilla and set aside with a piece of saran wrap pressed down onto the pudding till it cools. After it comes to room temperature, beat in cream cheese. Gently fold in cool whip. Set aside.

Place a layer of Nutter Butters in the bottom of 2 quart baking dish and arrange 1 cup of bananas on top. Then spoon 1/3 pudding mixture over bananas; top with a layer of vanilla wafers. Repeat layers once; top with remaining bananas and pudding. Arrange Nutter Butters around the inside edge of dish and push gently into the pudding. Cover the top with vanilla wafers, if you wish. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

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