ROASTED BANANA PUDDING

ROASTED BANANA PUDDING

5 ripe unpeeled medium bananas (about 2 pounds) + 1 fresh banana for garnish
2 cups half-n-half
2/3 cup sugar, divided 1/3 + 1/3 + 1/3
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (12-ounce) container COOL WHIP, thawed and divided (4 1/2 cups fresh whipped cream)
45-55 vanilla wafers, divided

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Place 5 bananas on a jelly-roll pan covered with parchment paper.
  • Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Remove 2 bananas; cool completely.
  • Peel and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices.
  • Bake the remaining 3 bananas for an additional 20 minutes.
  • Carefully peel and place the 3 bananas in a small bowl, and mash with a fork until smooth. *The original recipe calls for 3 sliced bananas and 2 mashed bananas. If you want more banana pieces in your pudding you may want to do this.
  • Combine half-n-half and 1/3 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a SLOW simmer. DO NOT BOIL!
  • Combine remaining 1/3 cup sugar, cornstarch, salt, and eggs in a medium bowl; whisking well.
  • SLOWLY add hot half-n-half mixture to sugar mixture, whisking constantly. It’s very important that you mix these together very slowly and whisk constantly. If the hot mixture is added too quickly it can cook the eggs!
  • Return this combined 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 (or your kitchen sink filled with ice) for 15 minutes or until mixture comes to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
  • Fold half of whipped topping into pudding.
  • Spread 1/2 of the custard evenly over the bottom of an 8x 8-inch baking dish. Top evenly with vanilla wafers and half of the banana slices.
  • Spoon remaining custard over banana slices.
  • Repeat procedure with vanilla wafers, banana slices.
  • Spread remaining half of whipped topping evenly over top.
  • Crush several wafers; sprinkle over top of whipped topping.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.
  • Spoon into ramekins and top with crumbled vanilla wafers and fresh banana slices.

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SALTED CARAMEL POTS DE CREME – BAKING PARTNERS

Swathi asked me to select a recipe for this month and I’d been dying to try these, so guess what we’re baking? Yep, you guessed it, SALTED CARAMEL POTS DE CREME. I cannot tell you where I first got the recipe because all I have is a photocopied page.  The salt brings out the rich buttery flavor of these simple creamy custards.

SALTED CARAMEL POTS DE CREME
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup whole milk
6 egg yolks
1 teaspoon flaked sea salt*

*I used Himalayan Pink fresh ground salt

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Adjust racks as necessary so your baking dish will be centered evenly in your oven.
  • Place six 6 ounce ramekins in a large baking dish. As you can see I used a combination of what I had available at the time.
  • Add enough water to the baking dish to go half way up the sides of the ramekins.
  • In a medium saucepan combine the sugar, water and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt.
  • Heat and stir until sugar is completely dissolved.
  • Increase heat to medium high and bring mixture to a rolling boil.
  • Boil for 8 minutes without stirring until you reach a deep amber color.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Whisking constantly, whisk in whipping cream and milk in a steady stream. Mixture will steam and sugar will begin to harden.
  • Return to heat cooking and whisking about 2 minutes until sugar has dissolved.
  • In a large bowl whisk egg yolks until light and foamy.
  • Slowly whisk whipping cream mixture into beaten egg yolks.
  • Pour mixture through sieve into a 4 cup spouted measuring cup.
  • Carefully pour strained mixture into ramekins.
  • Bake 40 minutes or until edges are set and centers jiggle just slightly.
  • Transfer to wire racks to cool, cooling completely.
  • Cover with saran and chill 4-24 hours.
  • Before serving sprinkle with flaked sea salt.
I have made something similar in the past if you want one not quite so rich. These Salted Caramel Cheesecakes were really good too.Every recipe we tried recently was excellent, but this dessert was melt-in-your-mouth decadently good!  It was also rich so I’m very glad I made it in these small ramekins for individual servings!
SALTED CARAMEL CHEESECAKE CUPS
CHEESECAKE
1/2 pound softened cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
2 JUMBO eggs at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
CARAMEL
6 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat the cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth.
  • Add eggs, beating until incorporated after each egg.
  • Beat in sour cream.
  • Pour into ramekins.
  • Set ramekins in a baking dish and add water to midway up the ramekins.
  • Place in the center of the oven and bake 15-20 minutes until the edges are set, but the centers are still jiggly.
  • Turn off oven and leave cheesecakes undisturbed for 1 hour.
  •  After 1 hour transfer ramekins to cooling rack and cool completely before covering.
  • Cover and chill cheesecakes in the refrigerator at least several hours, preferably overnight.
  • Meanwhile make the caramel.
  • In a heavy saucepan heat the corn syrup.
  • Stir in the sugar until well incorporated and cook over a moderately high heat, undisturbed until a deep amber caramel forms.
  • Turn off heat and carefully stir in butter with a long spoon.  Careful, it will spit.
  • Add the heavy cream in a thin stream, stirring constantly until smooth.
  • Add salt and blend well.
  • Transfer the caramel to a heatproof container and allow to cool.

To serve:

  • Heat caramel in small increments until desired temperature.
  • Pour a spoonful over each cheesecake and serve.

APPLE RUM RAISIN NOODLE PUDDING

I remember the first time I had NOODLE PUDDING – my little Jewish neighbor brought it over as a welcome to the neighborhood back in 1986. She called it noodle pudding. It was so delicious. I wanted to ask her for the recipe, but I’d just met her and I was young and shy. I made her my floating fruit cake in the same pan she’d brought over and returned it to her to ask for the recipe. I remember how hard she laughed at me. She said it was a Jewish custom to always return a plate, bowl or dish full and of course I could have the recipe.   

I’ve adapted it to suit my families tastes over the years and cut back on the amount of sugar but it is still a favorite!  I’ve also found other versions that have helped me repeatedly adapt it into what it is today.  My neighbor and I  became fast friends and shared LOTS of cherished family recipes before I moved from the neighborhood in 15 years later.

APPLE RUM RAISIN NOODLE PUDDING

2 cups dry wide egg noodles

2 beaten eggs
1/2 cup sugar
8 ounce crushed pineapple, drained well
1/4 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup golden rum
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons butter, melted

1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup milk

1 GALA apple, peeled, cored and grated

  • Cook and drain the noodles
  • Combine all other ingredients together
  • Fold into warm noodles
  • Generously spray an 8×8 baking dish with PURE
  • Gently spread entire mixture into dish evenly
  • Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes

SALTED CARAMEL CHEESECAKE CUPS

Every recipe we tried recently was excellent, but this dessert was melt-in-your-mouth decadently good!  It was also rich so I’m very glad I made it in these small ramekins for individual servings!
SALTED CARAMEL CHEESECAKE CUPS
CHEESECAKE
1/2 pound softened cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
2 JUMBO eggs at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
CARAMEL
6 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon sea salT
  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat the cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth.
  • Add eggs, beating until incorporated after each egg.
  • Beat in sour cream.
  • Pour into ramekins.
  • Set ramekins in a baking dish and add water to midway up the ramekins.
  • Place in the center of the oven and bake 15-20 minutes until the edges are set, but the centers are still jiggly.
  • Turn off oven and leave cheesecakes undisturbed for 1 hour.
  •  After 1 hour transfer ramekins to cooling rack and cool completely before covering.
  • Cover and chill cheesecakes in the refrigerator at least several hours, preferably overnight.
  • Meanwhile make the caramel.
  • In a heavy saucepan heat the corn syrup.
  • Stir in the sugar until well incorporated and cook over a moderately high heat, undisturbed until a deep amber caramel forms.
  • Turn off heat and carefully stir in butter with a long spoon.  Careful, it will spit.
  • Add the heavy cream in a thin stream, stirring constantly until smooth.
  • Add salt and blend well.
  • Transfer the caramel to a heatproof container and allow to cool.

To serve:

  • Heat caramel in small increments until desired temperature.
  • Pour a spoonful over each cheesecake and serve.

BAKED PINEAPPLE CUSTARD ala summer berries

BAKED PINEAPPLE BLACKBERRY CUSTARD
I originally got the pineapple portion of this recipe from my cousin Jenn, and it quickly became our family favorite. During the summer I add fresh berries to “spice” it up a bit in flavor and color. This recipe is really good warm, but also just as good cold. It also works as a wonderful custard to fill cakes too.
2 large cans crushed pineapple (drain & save juice)
2 cups pineapple juice
2 eggs beaten
4 tablespoons cornstarch
1 package blackberries, rinsed and chopped
1 cup sugar
mini marshmallows (OPTIONAL)
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Place pineapple in the bottom of a greased 13 x 9 pan.
  • Sprinkle blackberries over pineapple.
  • In a sauce pan whisk together the pineapple juice, eggs, sugar and cornstarch.
  • Cook until thick.
  • Pour over the pineapple and bake 20 minutes.
  • Top with marshmallows and return to oven until golden.