Banana bread pudding is one of those things I don’t recall being made in our home growing up as the dessert of choice was always cake. My mom is a serious baker when it comes to cakes… but traditional stuff and not those fancy ones you see in the cookbooks and on the Food Network. I’m still to find a cake which rivals her fruit cake. Not the heavy rum/fruit cake that’s so famous in the Caribbean, but a much lighter version. Maybe I’ll get her to share the recipe when she’s back from the Caribbean where they (mom and dad) usually do their winters.
I must confess that bananas are not my thing… had too much as a kid, so I kinda lost my liking for it. Banana bread pudding was never something I was interested in… until! About 3 years ago at my sister’s wedding, I had what was probably the best dessert I’ve ever had. The chef at Chaud restaurant in Port Of Spain, created a masterpiece of a dessert, something I have to admit I can’t recreate (yet). Then there was that night at Walkers Fish Market restaurant in Burlington Ontario when again my taste buds were captivated by what came to be the 2nd best dessert I ever had. Yup.. banana bread pudding, topped with a heavenly caramel sauce.
1 day old bread
2 1/4 cups warm milk
2 tablespoon butter
1 heaping tablespoon custard powder
3 eggs (room temp)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup sugar (granulated)
2 ripe bananas
1/3 cup raisins
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
* Notes: This is a good recipe to make use of ripe bananas which are a bit tarnished (going black and discolored). I added the custard powder to give it extra body and flavor. It was a suggestion by a friend from India who’s an amazing chef. We use day old bread so it’s a bit dry and will absorb the rich custard-like liquid very easily.
In the warm milk add the butter and whisk… should melt easily. Take about 3 tablespoon of that liquid in a smaller bowl, add the custard powder and whisk until you have a smooth consistency. Now add that custard mix to the bowl with the milk and butter (whisk).
In another bowl add the eggs, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla and work it well with a whisk, until creamed.
Combine the two liquids now (milk mixture and egg mixture) and give it a good whisk.
Your bread should have been prepped at this point as well. All I did was rip it apart into 1 to 2 inch pieces.
Now peel and slice the bananas and get ready to assemble everything.
In the bowl with the bread pieces, add the sliced banana and raisin.. then pour in the liquid and give it a good mix. Try to make sure all the pieces of bread absorb some of this rich liquid.. press down if necessary. Cover the bowl and allow to rest for about 20 minutes. Just to ensure that the bread absorbs all that goodness.
Preset your oven to 350F, then pour the bread mixture into an oven proof dish and place on the middle rack of your oven. It will take between 50 -55 minutes, depending on how well your oven distributes the heat. The top will be slightly golden when it’s done.
This banana bread pudding is very easy to put together, even though it may seem like a lot of steps. Just make sure you have a few big bowls handy as you can see from the recipe above, I used quite a few. Serve with some warm caramel sauce (see video below) and you’ll be dessert heaven. Add some home made coconut ice cream and you’ll take this to another level.