Nicole’s Banana Cream Pie

petit takett

My girlfriend Nicole is a fantastic baker, and her pies are especially notable.  She generously offered to share this delicious recipe with me for the my site.  We made this pie, and several other dishes, for a dinner party at her beautiful home in Pasadena.  The pie is relatively simple, but like many good things it has a lot of steps.  For more about this dinner party click here.

Ingredients:

Graham Cracker Crust:
2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup bakers sugar
1 mashed banana
5 tbs unsalted butter- melted
1/4 cup chocolate chips

Filling:
1/4 sugar
2.5 tbs cup corn starch 1/4 tsp salt
1.5 cups whipping cream
3/4 cups whole milk
1.5 large egg yolks
1/4 vanilla bean split length wise
1 tbs unsalted butter
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
4 ripe bananas- sliced on an angle about 1/4 inch thick

Topping:
1 pint whipping cream
1/8 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup bakers sugar

Mix all of the crust ingredients (except chocolate chips) together to form a wet, loose crumble.  Pack the crumble in the pie dish to form the crust.  Bake the crust at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes until the crust is golden.

Put the salt, sugar & cornstarch in a medium sized saucepan.  Stir the ingredients.  Turn the stove on at a low heat.  Pour in the milk and cream, slowly whisking the whole time.  Then add the eggs, seeded vanilla bean + shell.  Turn the heat up to medium and whisk gently until the mixture thickens, about 6 minutes.  Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl.  Add in the butter and the vanilla and stir slightly.  Remove vanilla bean shell and let cool, stirring occasionally while it cools.

Meanwhile, melt your chocolate chips using a double boiler.  Pour the melted chocolate chips onto the cooled graham cracker crust. Let the chocolate harden.

Make the whipped cream using a whisk and some elbow grease or a hand mixer. Whip the cream until you have soft peaks.  Add the vanilla, then the sugar.  Give it another quick whip.

To assemble the pie, first fill the crust with the custard.  Add a layer of bananas (in concentric circles), then a layer of whipped cream.  Add another layer of bananas, then another layer of cream, then more bananas.  Top it off with cream. Serve chilled.