Back in the Day’s Savannah Nana Puddin’

Back in the Day Bakery has become a landmark of sorts in Savannah.  From a humble (some would say gutsy) start eleven or so years ago in the Starland District, Cheryl and Griff Day have created a huge following with locals and tourists alike with one secret.  A great product.  They have many to share with you if you pay them a visit.  This recipe is for their banana pudding, which we got to enjoy when we traveled with them to New York City last year.  Fortunately, you don’t have to go all the way to the Big Apple for some bananas made into pudding.  Here is the recipe.  There is zero doubt you will Eat It and Like It.

Back in the Day’s Savannah Nana Puddin’



  • 8 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups half and half
  • One 14 ounce can condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons confectioners sugar
  • 8 large bananas
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 36 Janie Q shortbread bars (see page 149 in The Back in the Day Cookbook)


Whisk egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch and salt in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.  In a medium saucepan, heat the half and half to it’s boiling point, but do not let it actually boil. (About 180 degrees).  Whisk about one cup into the egg yolk mixture.  Continue to whisk adding the remainder of the half and half in a steady stream.  Continue to cook the egg-half and half mixture, whisking constantly for three to five minutes until it has completely thickened.  Remove from heat.  Whisk in the vanilla extract.  Let the filling mixture sit about two minutes to cool, then whisk in the butter until the pudding is silky.  Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of the pudding so that a skin does not form.  Let cool 30 minutes.  Whisk in the condensed milk and chill for at least 2 hours.  Using a mixer with a whisk attachment, whip one cup heavy cream in a medium bowl until it starts to thicken.  Add the confectioners sugar until stiff peaks hold when you lift the mixer.  Once chilled, gently fold in the whipped cream into the pudding mixture.  Return to the refrigerator to chill.  In a large serving bowl, spoon one-third of the pudding on the bottom.  Add one third of broken pieces of Janie Q shortbread bars, followed by a layer of sliced bananas.  Repeat process.  Finish with whipped cream.

Makes 12 servings.


Eat It and Like It launched in Savannah, Georgia with television personality Jesse Blanco as the host. His passion for food and travel has made Eat It and Like It a two-time EMMY nominated program about contemporary and traditional Southern food.

1 Comment

  •' Dr. J. W. Jones says:

    Great recipe….however, it is not as “back in the days” as you may think. You may ask, “How do you know?” Well, here is the reason I know…First, this recipe was first printed in 1934. And, if you think people could have been using this recipe for forty or fifty years before it was ever actually printed….Nope, not possible. I had to do a project in school (MANY moons ago) about corn starch, and that is the reason I have a little knowledge about the subject. Extracting the starch from corn flour was not possible until it was discovered by Thomas Kingford in 1842, but until the turn of the century, it was used primarily for medical and industrial purposes. Cooking with “corn starch” was not popularly practiced until the 1930’s here in the United States. While it is possible that some people were using it in the later half of the 1800’s, it would not have been available to the point that one would publish it in a recipe…especially a recipe as popular as ” Nanner Puddin’ “.

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