Thursday, November 26, 2009

Parisien Pastry Tour Part III

I just had to share with you these photos from our trip to Paris last May (2009). For me, one of the highlights of traveling to any foreign country is trying the local cuisine, and in Paris, my favorite part is the pastries! The escargot and crepes are fantastic too, but looking in the windows of the Patisseries and Boulangeries is just magical for me. I live in a suburb of Philadelphia, and we don't have bakeries like this anywhere. However if you travel to New York you can visist Francois Payard's store, which I have heard is amazing. Anyway...on the left are a few pastries that we had while in Paris.. the top picture is of a tarte exotique (it has an apricot glaze made with apricot jam and Grand Marnier) and a mille feuille (translating to a thousand layers). The next two are from the Boulangerie Paul which was only half a block from our apartment..very dangerous for my diet but convenient none the less. The first is an eclaire au cafe.. (coffee flavored) and the bottom is a crossaint au chocolat. I was dying to try these before I left to see the difference between the American version and the French. I found that the French was much flakier and lighter..absolutely delicious and worth every calorie!

Not Yo' Mama's Banana Pudding Pie

Wow, it has been a long time since my last entry! I'm sorry if anyone has been waiting to hear from me ! The recipe I'd like to share with you today is from Paula Deen. It's called "Not Yo' Mama's Banana Pudding Pie" and believe me it is delicious. The first time I had this dessert was Thanksgiving last year. My Aunt, who is a fantastic cook/baker made it and the whole family loved it! I recently made this for my boyfriend's sister's babyshower and I received lots of requests for the recipe. I thought it was perfect for a babyshower because it the chessmen cookies remind me of baby blocks. I made a couple of changes to Paula's recipe (see below for details).


  • 2 bags Pepperidge Farm Chessmen cookies
  • 6 to 8 bananas, sliced
  • 2 cups milk (I use whole milk)
  • 1 (5-ounce) box instant French vanilla pudding (I use plain vanilla)
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (12-ounce) container frozen whipped topping thawed, or equal amount sweetened whipped cream


Line the bottom of a 13 by 9 by 2-inch dish with 1 bag of cookies and layer bananas on top. (I like to put some pudding mixture on top of cookies first to help soften the cookies and to keep bananas from turning brown, then the bananas, then the majority of the pudding mixture.)

In a bowl, combine the milk and pudding mix and blend well using a handheld electric mixer.

Using another bowl, combine the cream cheese and condensed milk together and mix until smooth.

Gently fold the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture.

Add the cream cheese mixture to the pudding mixture and stir until well blended.

Pour the mixture over the cookies and bananas and cover with the remaining cookies (all facing in the same direction).

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

**Note: This is definitely best made the day ahead, or else it is difficult to eat the cookies, they need to soften.