As you can imagine, we need to consume a great deal of calories at Ditch Camp. But with the three of us digging, sawing or caring for the horses, little energy remains for fancy camp cooking. And truth is, when you’re that tired and hungry, most anything tastes good. We’re not picky. Food is fine. Fancy fare would not be appreciated as much as just plain hearty, filling, calories.
However, when we return home on the weekends, we indulge. Not because we have felt wanting for anything, or have cravings that need to be satisfied, but because I simply like cooking and baking, and enjoy doing this for my boys. So, yesterday we got bread started, baked dinner rolls, and have cinnamon rolls rising as I write. Today we’ll find time to make cookies after the cabins are cleaned. And last weekend, oh, last weekend was a good one… Banana Pudding. We call it Nanner Puddin.
Now, for those of you who have never had the pleasure of tasting this indulgence, you’re in for a treat. This is comfort food at its finest. Save room at dinner; you’ll need plenty for a big helping of this dessert. Or, just skip the main meal and have at it.
You can make this into a pie by starting with a crust. I like a cookie crumb crust made with Nilla Wafers. However, I prefer no crust – nothing to get soggy should any last long enough to be consumed as leftovers for breakfast the following morning.
I must have had a deprived childhood – I’d never had this or even heard of it growing up. I don’t believe it is common fare back east. But I’ve since learned, and love it. Hope you try and enjoy.
Start with making the vanilla pudding earlier in the day. In a heavy, medium sauce pan, whisk together:
2/3 cup sugar
¼ cup cornstarch
¼ teaspoon salt
Slowly whisk in:
2 ½ cups whole or evaporated milk
Then vigorously whisk in until smooth:
5 egg yolks
Continue constantly whisking this mixture over medium heat until it thickens, bubbles and comes to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in:
3 tablespoons butter
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
Cover this mixture with plastic wrap, smoothed over the pudding, directly on it. This prevents a film from forming on the pudding. Set this in the fridge to cool for several hours. Then you’re ready to assemble the pudding. To do this, start by spreading half the vanilla pudding evenly on the bottom of a medium serving bowl. In a separate bowl, combine:
2-3 sliced bananas
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Toss this gently, then spread on top of the first layer of pudding in the serving bowl. Next, cover the bananas with a second layer of the vanilla pudding. Top it all off with sweetened whipped cream. Whisk in a small bowl:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup powdered confectioners sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
Spread the whipped cream on top of the pudding, then decorate with Nilla Wafers.