Banana Pudding Pie
4 cups (8⅓ ounces), Nilla Wafer cookies
3 tablespoons, packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon, all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon, table salt
6 tablespoons, unsalted butter, melted
2 teaspoons, unflavored gelatin
1 3/4 cups, half-and-half, divided
3/4 cup (5¼ ounces), granulated sugar
5 , large egg yolks
2 tablespoons, all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon, table salt
Pinch , ground cinnamon
Pinch , ground allspice
2 tablespoons, unsalted butter, cut into 2 pieces and chilled
1 tablespoon, vanilla extract
2 , ripe bananas, peeled and sliced ¼ inch thick (1½ cups)
1/3 cup (2⅓ ounces), granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed (2⅓ ounces), light brown sugar
4 , large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon, cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon, table salt
FOR THE CRUST: Adjust oven rack 8 inches from broiler element and heat oven to 325 degrees. Pulse cookies, sugar, flour, and salt in food processor until finely ground, about 10 pulses. Add melted butter and pulse until combined, about 8 pulses, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Transfer mixture to 9-inch pie plate (it will seem like a lot of crumbs).
Using your hands, press crumbs firmly up sides of plate, building walls about ¼ inch thick and leveling top edge. Press remaining crumbs into even layer on bottom of plate, firmly pressing crumbs into corners of plate. Bake until fragrant and beginning to darken at edges, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer plate to wire rack.
FOR THE FILLING: Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over ½ cup half-and-half in small bowl and let mixture sit until gelatin softens, about 5 minutes. Whisk sugar, egg yolks, flour, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and remaining 1¼ cups half-and-half in large saucepan until fully combined. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly and scraping corners of saucepan, until mixture thickens, bubbles burst across entire surface, and mixture registers 180 degrees in several places, 5 to 7 minutes. Off heat, whisk in butter, vanilla, and gelatin mixture until combined.
Stir bananas into hot filling. Pour filling into crust (crust needn't be completely cooled). Press parchment paper directly onto surface of filling and refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
FOR THE MERINGUE: Whisk all ingredients together in bowl of stand mixer. Place bowl over saucepan filled with 1 inch of barely simmering water, making sure water does not touch bottom of bowl. Whisking gently but constantly, cook until mixture registers 160 to 165 degrees, 5 to 8 minutes.
Fit mixer with whisk attachment and whip on high speed until meringue forms stiff peaks and is smooth and creamy, 2 to 3 minutes.
Gently peel off parchment from filling (if any filling sticks to parchment, scrape off and smooth back over surface of pie). Spread meringue over filling, making sure meringue touches edges of crust. Working gently, use spatula or spoon to create swirls over surface.
FOR A BROILER: Heat broiler. Broil until meringue is well browned, 1 to 2 minutes, rotating plate as needed for even browning.
FOR A TORCH: Ignite torch; continuously sweep flame about 2 inches above meringue until well browned.
Slice pie into wedges with wet knife, wiping knife clean between slices. Serve immediately. (Topped pie can be refrigerated for up to 4 hours.)
YT Vid: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_PEMnJm5dJg