Polar vortex/Chiberia round two is upon us. People aren’t panicking as bad this time around. I can tell because I was able to buy all the groceries I needed this weekend (read: the grocery store still had onions this time.)
Obviously, we all know by now that the best way to deal with a polar vortex is with food. This time: pudding (and brownies, but those are coming later this week). There’s just something about pudding. It’s simultaneously cold and texturally refreshing, while also being rich and boozy. I can’t explain it, really, it just works.
This pudding is pretty much ideal. You can parcel this out into individual servings before you refrigerate it, or just throw it in one big bowl. You don’t have to temper any eggs. Yup, you heard that right. It’s a dream come true. Oh, and the booze in this pudding is totally optional. It shouldn’t be, but it is. You know, in case you want to make it for some kiddos.
recipe adapted from Food 52
3 TB unsalted butter, divided
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 – 1/2 tsp sea salt (if you really like salt, go for 1/2 tsp. otherwise, feel free to dial it back to 1/4 tsp)
1 cup heavy cream
3 TB cornstarch
1 cup milk (I used 2%)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 TB bourbon, whiskey or dark rum (optional)
- In a heavy bottomed sauce pan, brown 2 TB of butter over medium heat.
- Once browned, stir in the sugar and salt and stir to combine well.
- Whisk in the heavy cream and turn the heat to low.
- Put the cornstarch in a small bowl, and whisk in the milk bit by bit until the cornstarch is totally dissolved.
- Stir the cornstarch/milk mixture into the saucepan, then turn the heat back up to medium and let the mixture come to a simmer, stirring all the while. If you do not stir, your pudding will start to get lumpy. I prefer using a whisk here, as it will help break up any potential lumps that develop.
- Simmer (keep whisking) for about a minute, until the pudding has thickened enough that your whisk leaves a thick trail.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the last tablespoon of butter, the vanilla, and the booze (if using).
- If the pudding seems lumpy, press it through a fine strainer. Pour it into a bowl or several smaller dishes (ramekins, mugs, etc), and cover with plastic wrap. Press plastic wrap directly onto the pudding if you wish to avoid a skin forming. Chill for at least several hours before serving.
- Serve topped with lightly sweetened whipped cream and chocolate shavings/sprinkles.