Heavens knows I need a few hugs these days.
I usually make pudding using cornstarch because it's easy, but this time I decided to make a rich custard using egg yolks for thickening. I mean, why not? It's comfort food.
While I'm a huge fan of chocolate and desserts, I don't like super-sweet desserts. I like that little edge of something not-sweet. So I added a bit of espresso powder to add its bit of bitterness to this custard.
This was exactly what I was looking for. And then I found some cute little jars to serve it in.
This post is part of #Choctoberfest with Imperial Sugar where a bunch of food bloggers have joined together to post about chocolate all week. The sponsors provided products for a giveaway, and they also sent me products to work with.
Chocolate Custard Pudding
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups milk
3/4 cup Imperial sugar
1/2 cup natural cocoa powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3.5-ounce Lindt Excellence 85% cocoa dark chocolate bar, broken into pieces
6 egg yolks
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Combine the cream, milk, sugar, cocoa powder, espresso powder, salt, and chocolate bar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat on medium, stirring or whisking, until the sugar and chocolate bar melt and the cocoa powder is well blended in the milk mixture.
Continue cooking until the mixture comes to a gentle simmer then turn off the heat.
Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks in a medium bowl.
When the mixture is simmering, it's time to temper the egg yolks. This means that you warm the yolks slowly so they don't cook too quickly and scramble. Chocolate custard is good. Scrambled chocolate eggs isn't a great idea.
Tempering isn't difficult, so don't worry. Just add some of the milk mixture to the eggs slowly while you whisk or stir those eggs. Add about a cup of the hot milk to the eggs. You can add more. It doesn't need to be precise.
Now, add the warmed eggs back to the saucepan while stirring. Turn the heat back on and continue cooking, stirring continuously, until the mixture thickens and just barely starts to bubble a bit.
Turn the heat off and add the vanilla extract and stir to combine.
Pour the custard pudding through a strainer into a storage container - a quart-sized container is perfect. The reason you need to strain is that no matter how careful you are, chances are that you'll get a few bits of egg, and particularly if there was any egg white with the yolks - and who can separate eggs that perfectly, right?
Chill the custard and serve cold.
Check out the recipes from all the participating bloggers. I think you'll love them!