Banana pudding may sound like kids stuff, but brandy and malt powder make it more special for the adult table. Make the cookie cups and chocolate sauce while the pudding chills.
Scrape vanilla bean seeds with a paring knife into a medium saucepan; add milk and vanilla bean. Heat over low heat until steaming, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk egg, sugar, cornstarch, malt and salt in a medium bowl until smooth. Gradually whisk in hot milk, then return mixture to pan.
Cook the milk mixture, whisking constantly, over medium heat, until it thickens and comes to a simmer, 3 to 5 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve into a bowl. Discard vanilla bean. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on pudding. Refrigerate until cold, 4 hours or overnight.
Just before serving, peel and dice banana. Place in a small bowl and toss with Cognac and lemon juice. Stir into pudding.
To assemble, divide cookie cups among 8 plates and spoon in pudding. Drizzle 3 tablespoons chocolate sauce around each cup. Top pudding with chocolate curls, if desired. Serve immediately.
Chocolate Cookie Cups
Silky Chocolate Sauce
1/2 low-fat milk, 4 other carbohydrate