For the Vanilla Wafer Crust
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Using a food processor or mini-chopper, pulse the vanilla wafers until finely ground. In a medium bowl, combine the vanilla wafer crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter. Stir until fully combined.
Lightly butter or grease a 9” springform pan. Line the bottom of the pan with a circle of parchment paper. Press the crust mixture evenly into the bottom and up sides of the pan. (Tip: A flat-bottomed glass helps pack the crust mixture down evenly.)
Bake crust at 350°F for 7-8 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
For the Cheesecake
Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
Using a countertop mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until completely smooth (about 3 minutes).
Add the granulated sugar, brown sugar and flour; mix well. (Tip: Don’t forget to scrape the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl to fully incorporate the sugar.)
Whisk the eggs and egg yolks together and add to the bowl in 2 additions, mixing fully on low speed after each addition.
Add the sour cream, vanilla and mashed bananas; mix on low speed until fully combined. (Tip: Use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure the filling is fully mixed.)
Pour the batter on top of the cooled crust.
Wrap the bottom of the pan with a piece of aluminum foil and place in a large baking pan. Fill pan with about 1/2”-3/4” of water. Bake at 325° until center of cake is just barely set (about 80-90 minutes). (Tip: Pull the cheesecake out of the oven when there is about 1" ring of "looser" filling left in the center of the cake.)
Remove cake from oven and cool for 10 min. Place in refrigerator until fully cooled. (Tip: I like to wrap entire pan in plastic wrap and freeze overnight. The next day, I remove the cake from the freezer and release the springform pan. Then I just transfer the cake to a serving platter and defrost in a refrigerator for 4-5 hours.)
Crumble Pralines over top of cheesecake before serving.
For the Pralines
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or silicone liner; set aside.
Place all ingredients into a large saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring often, until mixture begins to boil. Let boil for 3 minutes, or until temperature reaches 238-240°.
Remove pan from heat and continue stirring until mixture begins to thicken slightly.
Using 2 large spoons, drop spoonfuls of praline mixture onto lined sheet pan. Let cool completely.