Sunday, January 17, 2016

Banana Split Delight

Sometimes a dessert is just a dessert.
And, sometimes a dessert is sooooo much more. It is heaven. It is all things amazing. It is the stars aligning in the universe. 
This right here... it's one of the latter. 
So many layers of ridiculous tastiness. 
Yes... you are going to dirty some dishes on this one but, you know what? It won't even matter once you dive into it. It serves 16 and the servings are VERY generous. 
This is one of those savor-every-bite-in-the-hopes-it-will-last-forever dishes. 

Banana Split Delight

First Layer
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup coarsely chopped, toasted walnuts
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted

Second Layer
2 (8oz each) bricks of cream cheese (total of 16 oz)
1 cup icing sugar
1 (20 oz) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 cup whipped cream

Third Layer
4 medium bananas

Fourth Layer
2 3/4 cup milk
2 pkg (4 servings each) vanilla pudding 

Fifth Layer
3 cups whipped cream

Sixth Layer
1/2 to 1 cup of chocolate fudge sauce
1/2 cup coarsely chopped, toasted walnuts

Whipped cream
16 Maraschino cherries

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly spray a 9 X 13 pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
Prepare 1st layer - stir together graham cracker crumbs, walnuts, and sugar. Stir in the butter until well mixed. Press the mixture into the prepared 9 X 13 pan. Bake at 350 for about 15 - 18 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool to room temp. (Can be placed in fridge to speed up process.)

Prepare 2nd layer - Beat cream cheese until smooth, scraping sides as needed. Beat in the icing sugar. Beat in the pineapple until well combined. Finally, fold in the whipped cream. Carefully spread over the crust.

Prepare 3rd layer - slice bananas and lay over the pineapple layer. Lightly press the bananas down into the cream cheese layer.

Prepare 4th layer - Pour milk into a mixing bowl, sprinkle with the 2 boxes of pudding powder. Beat until well combined and thickened but still spreadable, scraping sides of bowl as needed. Spread over the bananas.

Prepare 5th layer - Spread the whipped cream over the pudding layer.

Prepare 6th layer - Drizzle the chocolate sauce evenly over the top. Sprinkle with the walnuts.

Lastly, decorate as desired with extra whipped topping swirls and maraschino cherries. I did 16 swirls to indicate where to cut the dessert for 16 slices. You don't have to do this if you don't want to.
Chill until ready to serve.

How cute does it look? Am I right?

I made this for our mom to take to a luncheon she was going to so I only managed to get a photo of it cut because she smuggled the last piece out!
She said it was a HUGE hit. 

I stored it overnight in the fridge and they served it the next afternoon and it held up very well. You want to let it sit for at least a couple of hours to set up. 
FYI - if you don't want to whip your own cream you can always use thawed Cool Whip instead. 
So many flavors some through - the pineapple, the cream cheese, the banana, the toasted walnuts (DEFINITELY toast the walnuts, don't skip this!!), the chocolate.... 
Need I say more?
You should probably go make this. 

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