Unpacking Our Collection: Banana Puddin’

When it comes to creating community through sharing of art and food, Martha Clippinger is a natural. This week, she rediscovers Banana Puddin’, and recounts its place in her early college life.

Unpacking Time - Banana Puddin'
Banana Puddin by Yee-Haw Industries in the collection of Martha Clippinger

After a childhood of growing up in Columbus, GA, I moved to the Bronx to attend Fordham University. During those college years, I absorbed as much of New York as possible, but being one of a few Southerners on campus, I felt a sense of duty to share some flavors from my part of the country. Banana pudding turned out to be a crowd favorite — literally. I once made a batch so big that I couldn’t close the door to my oven when browning the meringue. Speaking of meringues, I better give you the recipe. Some people go and funk it up with cool whip. NO, MA’AM!

Around the time I was whipping (not cool) up pudding, I developed an interest in Yee-Haw Industries’ letterpress posters and was thrilled when my folks gave me this Southern Culture on the Skids poster featuring my favorite dessert.

Unpacking Time - Banana Puddin' Installed
New home, new kitchen, unpacking our art.

When I unpacked it this week, I realized that this poster hadn’t been out of my portfolio since those college days, but it’s about to make up for lost time and go up in our kitchen.

Upon googling Yee-Haw Industries, I discovered that it is now operating as Pioneer House and has a shop on Etsy. I’d advise you to check it out and then go make yourself some puddin’!

BANANA PUDDING recipe:

2 bananas (surprise, surprise)

2 packs of Jell-O vanilla pudding (Cook n Serve! Do not use “instant”! It will instantly backfire.)

4 ½ cups milk

3 eggs separated

Box of Nilla wafers

dash of cream of tartar

1/3 cup of sugar

Heat oven to 350°F.

Beat pudding mixes and milk in medium saucepan with whisk until blended. Beat egg yolks in small bowl until blended. Gradually stir into milk mixture. Bring to full rolling boil on medium heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

Arrange layer of wafers on bottom and up sides of 2 quart baking dish. Top with layers of 1/3 of the pudding and half the banana slices. Repeat layers; cover with remaining pudding.

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar in medium bowl with mixer on high speed until foamy. Gradually beat in sugar until stiff peaks form. Spread over pudding, sealing to edge of dish.

Bake 15 minutes or until meringue is browned. Cool. Refrigerate. Eat and get EXTRA FUNKY!