This recipe is all about the bananas. I have sliced bananas lengthwise covering the entire crust bottom. I have sliced bananas on top of half the creamy pudding mixture. And I have small leftover pieces of banana on top of the remaining half of the creamy pudding. In all, I use five bananas, before covering the top of the creamy pudding with hand-mixed dairy cream. There is no condensed milk, artificial sweetener, vanilla flavoring, or preservatives in the making of my banana cream pie.
For pie crust, I find the ratio of one part butter to three parts flour is the best. Use cold butter cut up into small pieces and add to the flour and salt mixture. Use a food processor or mix by hand until the mixture looks like small granules. Add cold water slowly until the mixture forms small chunks using a food processor. If doing by hand, mix until the flour mixture holds together. Place this in a plastic bag, and press down to form a disk and place in the refrigerator for one hour.
Take the dough out of the refrigerator and roll out onto a floured surface for a 9 or 10 inch pie. After fitting the pie crust into a glass, metal, or ceramic pie pan, cover with plastic and place in your freezer for at least 1 hour.
Take the pie crust out of your freezer, and cover the bottom and sides with tin foil. Place whatever beans you have onto the tin foil and bake in a preheated 450 degree-Fahrenheit oven for 12 -15 minutes. Make sure the edges of the crust are a very light brown, not dark brown, before taking out of the oven. Leave the oven on.
Take the crust out of the oven, and let set for five minutes. Empty the beans, take out the tin foil, and place the pie crust back in the oven for 4 more minutes, or until the edge of the crust is darker brown and the bottom of the crust appears flaky (cooked). Take out of the oven and let sit on a cooling rack.
For the pudding mixture - takes about fifteen minutes - using a two quart saucepan, add four cups of milk to the sugar, cornstarch, and salt mixture. Add to this the four egg yolks and cook on medium heat until the mixture boils and starts to thicken, then turn down the heat to a simmer. While this is simmering, beat the egg whites until they begin to form soft peaks, then add a half cup of the hot mixture into the egg whites and continue beating.
Fold the egg white mixture back into the thickened pudding and continue cooking on simmer for three minutes. Take off the stove, when completed, and let sit.
Take the five bananas and sliced them lengthwise. Each banana should yield four lengthwise slices. Place the banana slices on the bottom of the pie crust staring from the center outwards. The round part of the banana should be facing the crust's outer edge.(I use an imaginary line from the top to the bottom of the center of the pie - the diameter. I then start from the center on the right, and work my way up. The I complete the process by doing the same thing for the right bottom, left top, and left bottom so that in the end, the entire crust bottom is covered.
Add half of the pudding mix over the bananas. Repeating the process above, cover the pudding mixture with the banana slices. Add the remaining pudding mix over the bananas. For the leftover banana slices, dot the top of the pudding mixture with small pieces of bananas. Cover with plastic and place in refrigerator for one to two hours.
Whip up the cream and slowly add two tables of sugar once the whipped cream forms soft peaks. Continue whipping until the cream becomes thick like softened butter. Spread this over the pie when you are ready to serve.