Not Pudding AroundPosted: October 26, 2011
A few months ago I made pudding from scratch. Rich, chocolate-y stuff that made me feel like a kid again. It was pretty great.
But this vanilla bean pudding … it’s pretty awesome.
There I go again, using positive words to talk about vanilla. Oh, here come some more. Like unbelievably creamy. Remarkably rich. Incredibly flavorful. It’s also extremely easy to make. Ha — how many more times can I tell you how awesome it is? (You’ll probably get a few more.)
Vanilla Bean Pudding
– 2 vanilla beans
– 4 cups of 2% milk
– ½ cup of heavy cream
– ½ cup of sugar
– 1/8 teaspoon of salt
– 4 large egg yolks
– ¼ cup of cornstarch
– 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter, diced
– 2 cookies, crumbled (whatever you have an hand, or see recipe below)
Using a paring knife, carefully split the vanilla beans open, scrape out the insides and place into a saucepan. Add the empty vanilla beans, milk, cream, sugar and salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat, cover and let the mixture steep for 15 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and cornstarch. Slowly whisk in the warm mixture, then pour everything back into the saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly for about 3 minutes, until the mixture thickens. (Your arm will get a nice workout.) Then whisk in the butter. Pour the pudding through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Discard the vanilla beans and anything else in the strainer. Let the pudding cool for about 10 minutes.
Divide some crumbled cookies into small cups or dishes, then fill with pudding. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Top with extra cookie crumbs before serving, and eat.
For the cookies, I modified my apple oatmeal cookie recipe. I nixed the nutmeg and allspice, used just a sprinkling of cinnamon and added a teaspoon of vanilla extract, ¼ cup of milk, ½ cup of chocolate chips and ½ cup of grated walnuts to the dough. I also baked them at 350º for about 15 minutes.
Seriously. This pudding is, was, will always be awesome. It tastes like the richest, creamiest milk you can imagine. And I made it with 2% milk so I can’t even imagine how great whole milk would be. My chocolate pudding may have made me feel like a kid, but this one makes me very happy to be an adult. And, the texture combination! It’s truly perfect: crunchy cookies on top, creamy pudding in the middle, soft cookies on the bottom. What’s not to like about that?