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Banana Pudding Bars



It's no secret, I'm bananas over bananas. I try really hard to avoid bookmarking more banana recipes, but I can't help myself. ESPECIALLY when there is custard involved. And so, ladies and gents, I present thee with banana pudding bars.


Holy moly guacamole. These are sort of like banana cream pie, but easier because we're bypassing the traditional pie crust and crushing up vanilla wafers instead. From there, it's just a simple vanilla custard and some whipped cream, and you've got yourself a cool and refreshing dessert idea for summer potlucks.


Make sure you err on the side of cooking your custard longer so that it's thick enough to withstand being cut into bars. I didn't do this and the bars sort of deconstructed, but they were still absolutely delicious and that's what matters, right?

Banana Pudding Bars

Yield: 16 squares
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Ingredients:

For the custard:
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 and 1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the crust:
1 and 1/2 cups vanilla wafer crumbs
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/8 teaspoon salt

For the whipped topping:
1 cup heavy cream, cold
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

2-3 bananas, sliced into coins
vanilla wafer crumbs, for garnish

Directions:

For the custard:
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until well-combined. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, add milk, heavy cream, salt, and cornstarch and whisk to combine. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Then, slowly add the heated milk mixture to the egg yolk mixture, whisking swiftly to make sure you don't cook the eggs.

Once you've fully combined both mixtures, return the entire mixture back to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Boil for 3-5 minutes, then remove from heat, and stir in butter and vanilla extract. Transfer pastry cream to a heatproof bow and cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic wrap directly against the surface of the cream. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.

For the crust:
Spray an 8x8 inch glass baking dish with non-stick spray, then line with parchment paper and spray again.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together vanilla wafer crumbs, melted butter and salt until thoroughly combined and all crumbs are evenly moistened. Press the crumbs onto the bottom of prepared pan. Use the flat bottom of a measuring cup to help even everything out and compact the crumbs. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

For the whipped topping:
In a medium-sized bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat together heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until soft peaks form.

To assemble:
Spread half of the cooled custard over the cooled wafer crust. Top with banana slices. Spread remaining custard over the banana slices. Spread whipped cream over the custard. Garnish with vanilla wafer crumbs.

Before serving, garnish with additional banana slices and cut into squares.

Recipe from Celebrating Sweets 

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