One of my favorite desserts ever is the banana cream pie at Bandera restaurant in LA. When I competed in a friendly pie competition, I came up with a pie that was similar to the one at Bandera (recipe here). Since pie isn’t an option on my gluten free diet, I decided to make the same ingredients (minus the crust) into a parfait. To me, the filling is the best part anyway!
custard cream (from Williams Sonoma banana cream pie recipe):
3 cups whole milk
1/3 cup cornstarch
4 large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
1/8 tsp. fine sea salt
1 vanilla bean
2 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
caramel (adapted from Cooking Classy):
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
3 Tbsp salted butter
1/3 cup and 2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 large bananas, peeled and thinly sliced
4 oz chocolate shaved
Whipped cream (from Williams Sonoma):
1. Combine the cream, sugar, and heavy cream.
2. Using a medium mixer (or by hand – but it will take a long time!), beat until peaks form.
3. Cover and refrigerate while preparing the rest of the parfait.
Custard cream (from Williams Sonoma):
1. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup of the milk and the cornstarch.
2. Mix the egg yolks in a heatproof bowl.
3. Gradually whisk the milk mixture into the yolks.
4. In a saucepan, combine the remaining 2 1/2 cups milk, the sugar and salt.
5. Slit the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the seed into the saucepan and add the pod.
6. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
7. Gradually whisk the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture, and then return the mixture to the saucepan.
8. Heat over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil, whisking constantly.
9. Reduce the heat to low and let bubble for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter. Remove the pod.
10. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the filling, and pierce the plastic a few times with a knife tip to allow the steam to escape.
11. Place the bowl in a larger bowl of ice water and let cool until lukewarm.
Caramel (adapted from Cooking Classy):
1. Heat water and sugar in a saucepan over moderate heat, whisking constantly.
2. Once the mixture comes to a boil, stop whisking and allow the mixture to turn into a dark amber color.
3. Once the mixture gets to a dark amber color, whisk in the butter.
4. Once the butter is melted, remove the saucepan from the heat and add the heavy cream. Whisk immediately.
5. Whisk until the caramel is smooth. Allow it to cool for a few minutes.
6. Transfer the caramel to a glass container to cool and ready to use.
Making the parfait:
1. Take the custard cream bowl out of the ice bowl and remove the plastic wrap. Take out the rest of the ingredients (whipped cream, caramel, sliced bananas, shaved chocolate).
2. Place 1/4 cup of the custard cream in the bottom of a glass.
3. Add a layer of sliced bananas, and drizzle some caramel (1/2 tablespoon) over the bananas.
4. Add about 2 tablespoon of the whipped cream.
5. Repeat a second time, then top the second layer of whipped cream with shaved chocolate.
Makes about 6 parfaits.