"It's the company, not the cooking, that makes the meal!" ~Perilee 
(Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Banana Cream Pie-A Family Tradition!

If there is one dessert for me and my family of origin that says "Thanksgiving" and "Family Favorite" It would be mom's homemade BANANA CREAM PIE!! Mom would always feed a crowd. We'd have one of almost every flavor of pie and we had to have 6-9 Banana Cream Pies. The other pies were always leftovers! You were lucky if you got a piece of Banana Cream Pie with all the family and extended family that was at our home on Thanksgiving Day. So holding with tradition I have continued to make this wonderful pie for my little family and guest were ever we have Thanksgiving. It is still the Belle of the Ball so to speak! If you love creamed pies this one is in my opinion just "HEAVENLY!!!"

Vanilla Cream Pie
(Enough for one unfilled baked-crust pie crust)

3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
(I like to put these in the saucepan and blend them together before adding the milk)
3 cups milk (I always use 1% whatever you normally drink works here)
3 egg YOKES, slightly beaten
2 Tablespoons margarine or butter
2 teaspoons vanilla

Prepare and bake pastry for unfilled one-crust pie using 9-inch pie pan. In medium saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Stir in milk. Blending until smooth. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils and thickens, stirring constantly. Boil for 2 minutes; remove from heat. Blend a small amount of hot mixture into egg yolks. (This part can be tricky if you pour it in to hot it cooks the yokes and you get little lumps of scrambled egg type pieces in your pie. I have found the best method after much trial and error is to put my yokes in a bowl that I can add the hot pudding to one Tablespoon at a time. I cool each Tablespoon just slightly before whisking them in the beaten eggs. I continue you this for about 4-5 Tablespoonful then I had one straight from the pan and when I feel like the yokes are warmed up to my satisfaction I pour them slowly into the main batch). Return the hot egg mixture to the mail pot, blending well. Cook until mixture comes to a boil. Boil 1 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in margarine /butter and vanilla. Cool pudding. (We always pour ours out into a new bowl (Because we need the pan to keep cooking several more batches! ;-)) and cover with waxed paper so it doesn't develop a skin. Pour into cooled , baked crust! (Never put a hot filling in a cold crust. Hot in Hot and cold in cold--to keep your crust beautiful and not soggy.) Refrigerate for 3 hours or until set. If desired, serve with whipped cream. (We also cover it with wax paper after putting in pie crust to keep the skin from developing. Maybe mom did this to keep little taste testing fingers out! until time to serve.)


BANANA CREAM PIE: Cool filling in saucepan to lukewarm. Pour into Pie Crust. When ready to serve, slice banana on top of pie and top with whipped cream. (Bananas can be added in on top of the crust before pouring the filling in, but we have found that they don't keep as well-turning brown and mushy. Our preference is to add them to individual slices when ready to serve.)

Butterscotch Cream Pie: Substitute firmly packed brown sugar for sugar.

Chocolate Cream Pie: Increase sugar to 1 cup and add 1 oz (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate to filling mixture before cooking.

Coconut Cream Pie: Stir 1 cup coconut into cooked filling with margarine and vanilla.

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