The day I discovered I could make vanilla pudding in my microwave changed my life. No more scorched custard, hot stoves or instant pudding mix.
Microwave banana pudding is the perfect summer-time dessert. Cool to make and cool to eat.
It’s also high on my list of comfort food–something I’ve been needing lately.
Side note: Some of you might remember my father (the one wearing a green sweater) who celebrated his 92nd birthday a couple weeks ago. He hasn’t been feeling well. Congestive heart failure seems to be getting the best of him these days.
He recently gave me the key to his treasured Honda Civic with instructions to sell it. Although necessary, he said it would break his heart. It broke mine too– I cried all the way home.
Today, I brought his computer to my house. He doesn’t need it. This man who has played online Scrabble for as many years as it has been available has not turned on his computer for several weeks. Says he’s not likely to ever use it again. I cried all the way home.
Thankfully, this recipe is so simple I have it memorized–a big plus when I don’t feel like cooking.
Store-bought vanilla wafers are my go-to cookie for this but sometimes I like to make my own shortbread crumbles for a dessert that tastes like banana cream pie in a bowl. Oh my! It is wicked good!!
- If you try my shortbread recipe, (one of the best recipes on this blog) make it as written leaving off chocolate chips. When cool, crumble and layer in the same way as vanilla wafers.
- Because I keep only skim milk and heavy cream in my fridge, I sometimes put 2 tablespoons of heavy cream in a 2-cup measure and use skim milk for the rest to make it a touch richer but it’s certainly not necessary.
- I don’t normally use a sieve for this pudding because mixing in a blender before microwaving prevents lumps. However, if cream turns out a bit lumpy after it is cooked, push it through a coarse sieve before it cools.
- I also use this recipe to make banana cream pie, coconut cream pie and chocolate cream pie.
- Many people put meringue on top of their banana pudding but I’m a whipped cream girl. Suit yourself.
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups milk (skim, 1%, 2% or whole)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract (use vanilla bean paste if feeling extravagant)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 medium bananas
- 1 recipe of shortbread or vanilla wafers
- Add sugar, egg yolks, flour, milk and salt to a blender or food processor bowl. Pulse 5 times until mixed well. Pour into 2-quart batter bowl. If desired, pour through a strainer into batter bowl.
- Microwave on HIGH 4-5 minutes. Stop and whisk well. MW for 2-3 more minutes stopping and whisking when pudding starts to rise up in bowl or at least once a minute. When mixture thickens enough to coat a spoon (see picture), remove from microwave and whisk till smooth.
- Allow pudding to cool a bit before adding butter and vanilla. Whisk well. Place a sheet of plastic wrap on top of cream and allow to cool to room temperature. If you are in a hurry, set bowl in sink of ice water for faster cooling.
- Cover bottom of 1½ quart dish with thin layer of custard.
- Add layer of vanilla wafers or shortbread followed by layer of sliced bananas.
- Add ½ of remaining custard, followed by another layer of vanilla wafers and bananas.
- End with a layer of custard.
- Cover with plastic wrap placed in a way that it touches the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming. Chill at least 2 hours. Overnight is even better--especially if using vanilla wafers. Serve with whipped cream.
Two of my very favorite desserts on this blog: