Key Ingredient

Redux: Banana Pudding

By: The Local Palate

Top Bananas

Two Takes on a Classic

Summertime demands cool freshness and no-fuss ingredients. When it comes to dessert, banana pudding fits the bill, requiring little time at the stove. The classic combination of creamy custard layered with sliced bananas, fresh whipped cream (or toasty meringue), and vanilla wafers is an easy way to treat a crowd. Banana pudding transports well to outdoor cookouts and serves as the perfect punctuation to a barbecue plate. For nearly as long as bananas have graced Southern ports (that is, since the late nineteenth century), banana pudding has found its place on the dessert table. Pitmaster Bryan Furman of B’s Crackin’ BBQ, with locations in Atlanta and Savannah, serves the quintessential pudding as worthy follow-up to his lauded ribs and pulled pork. Meanwhile, East Atlanta chef Kevin Gillespie recreates his great-grandmother’s recipe from memory–and adds his own twist.

Bryan Furman, B’s Cracklin’ BBQ

Bryan Furman’s recipe comes from his mother who gave him the sage wisdom to “make it quick.” Considering her son’s long nights tending hogs on the pit, she gave him a recipe that’s as simple as it is delicious. Instant vanilla pudding is made light and airy with the addition of Cool Whip and gains a signature tang from sour cream. 


Kevin Gillespie, Gunshow

Kevin Gillespie makes his great-grandmother’s recipe–vanilla layered with bananas and soft pound cake, served warm with golden meringue. To balance the sweetness of ripe bananas, he calls on coffee, brushing a strong brew over the toasted pound cake before assembling.

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