This pudding reminds me of my cousin’s grandma. We fondly called her Aunt Jane. She was southern and had mad skills in the kitchen when it came down to cooking southern-style. My sister and I would spend weekends with her when we were 12 and 13 years old. She would teach us how to play Rummy and play out in her backyard with her dog, Pooper. She taught us a lot during those preteen weekends. Some of my favorite memories were helping her in the kitchen. Banana pudding happened a lot in her house, that and her favorite snack, a bowl of buttermilk with cornflakes or broken up saltine crackers. My sister and I would gag every time we saw her eat a bowl, but we gobbled up her banana pudding like there was no tomorrow.
Jane passed away a few years ago and I just recently decided to make her version of banana pudding. It felt like I was 12 years old again sitting at her kitchen table swinging my feet shuffling a deck of cards for a new game of Rummy. I’ve made a few tweaks to this recipe, but for the most part, it tastes just like how Aunt Jane used to make it. It tastes like memories.
Banana Pudding Recipe – My aunt’s original recipe used Dream Whip, but I replaced it with fresh whipping cream. I’ve toyed around with the idea of making the pudding from scratch, but haven’t gone that far yet. If you do make the pudding from scratch, please let me know how it turns out for you. Also, this can be made into banana pudding pie by pulsing 1 1/2 cups of Nilla wafers, melting a few tablespoons of butter, mixing it together and pressing it to the bottom of a pie pan, then following the directions below for the filling.
1 large box of instant vanilla pudding
1 box of vanilla wafers (Nilla Wafers are the best, in my opinion)
2 ripe bananas, sliced
1 cup of heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons of powdered sugar
Prepare instant pudding according to directions and set aside. In a casserole dish, line bottom with vanilla wafers, then for the second layer, sliced bananas. Pour 1/3 or 1/2 (depending on casserole dish size) of the pudding mixture evenly over layers and repeat with layers of wafers and banana slices until pudding bowl is empty. The top layer should be covered in wafers, then topped with a nice thick layer of freshly whipped cream. For garnish I like to sprinkle on a couple of crushed wafers. Let the pudding set in the fridge for 3 hours before serving.