Fancy smelling dish soap and a fresh sponge are a luxury.
Lotion next to the kitchen sink is a luxury.
Fresh dish towels are a necessity.
Not-so-fancy olive oil is a necessity .
Fancy olive oil is a luxury.
Homemade pudding is a luxury… sometimes a necessity… depends on the day.
A full bottle of whisky is a total luxury… caramelized bananas and cream, just icing on the cake.
Homemade pudding is what I plan on making for myself when I’m an old lady with no teeth. I’ll probably eat it warm from the bowl while watching Wheel of Fortune. Whatever.
I’m pretty sure the only things that takes homemade pudding from good to good-grief-good is brown sugar and whisky.
Butterscotch pudding is a deep, dark pudding made from brown sugar and melted butter. The two are cooked down with milk, cream and eggs. Whisky is a really beautiful addition to this pudding, but if you have a problem with whiskey in your pudding… you sure can skip it.
I never skip whisky… but that’s just me.
This pudding is thickened with both cornstarch and eggs.
It’s a nice balance. The pudding is neither too chalky thick tasting or too eggy tasting. Yay, balance.
Brown sugar is moistened with melted butter and combined with whole milk and heavy cream.
After some stove top cooking, this pudding is the consistency of warm hot fudge. It thickens up in the cold fridge. It’s good warm too, if you’re as impatient as I am… but it’s really delicious cold.
I haven’t said a dang word about the bananas I snuck into this dessert.
Bananas were sauteed with butter and brown sugar, and finished with a splash of whisky. Holy cow.
I crumbled graham crackers on top just to add some crunch.
Whipped cream too. Well… whipped cream with a little sugar and whisky.
Did I put whisky in every bit of this recipe? Yes. I did. I don’t feel bad.
Thankfully, whisky is not the thing I gave up for Lent.
Butterscotch Pudding with Caramelized Bananas and Cream
serves 4 to 6 people
recipe adapted from David Lebovitz
For the Pudding:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
3/4 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon whisky (optional, but dang delicious)
For the Bananas:
2 to 3 ripe but firm bananas, sliced about 1/3″ thick, at an angel
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
scant 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons whisky (optional, but delicious)
For the Whipped Cream:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons whisky (again… optional, but delicious)
about 8 graham crackers, coarsely crumbled
Melt butter in a medium saucepan I used a saucepan with a rounded bottom, which helped keep any pudding bits from getting over cooked and curdled in the corners of the pan during the whisking phase. If you have a big enough pan with a slightly rounded bottom, go for it! If not… totally not the end of the world.
Add brown sugar to the melted butter and whisk together to ensure that all of the brown sugar is moistened by the butter. The mixture will be grainy. That’s ok. Remove the pan from the flame.
In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch, salt and 1/4 cup of milk. Make sure there are no cornstarch lumps in the mixture. Whisk in the eggs.
Return the sugar and butter mixture to a medium-low flame. Pour in the milk, cream and cornstarch mixture. Whisk almost constantly as the mixture heats. The mixture will thicken just as it starts to simmer. Allow to simmer, whisking constantly, until the pudding is the thickness of warm hot fudge sauce. Pass the pudding through a fine mesh strainer and into a bowl. Stir in the vanilla extract and whisky. Cover the pudding with plastic wrap, directly on top of the pudding, and allow to cool and thicken in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
Once the pudding is thickened, caramelize the bananas.
Melt butter in a small sauce pan. Add banana slices in a single layer and top with brown sugar. Allow bananas to brown on one side. Flip bananas, cook down the sugar, and allow bananas to brown on the other side. This took me about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove pan from the flame and drizzle in about 2 teaspoons of whisky. The pan will sizzle a bit. Use this sizzling time to remove the bananas and sugar from the pan and place on a plate to cool slightly before using.
While the bananas cool, whip together cream, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and whisky. Whip until soft peaks form.
In 4 or 6 small serving dishes, add a few spoonfuls of pudding. Top with a few banana spices, crumbled graham crackers and whipped cream. Repeat layering once more. Serve immediately or place in the fridge if necessary. Graham crackers will lose their crunch if they sit in the pudding in the fridge… just so you know.