I was notorious in my family for being the child that could only be comforted by my mother.
Most playful family weekends, the scene went something like this: I’d be in the backyard playing with my little sister, my dad and Scamper, the family dog on our creaky, rusted and awesomely fun swing set. My favorite move was to swing as high as I could, count to three with my sister and jump out of the swings onto the grass. Sounds innocent enough, but I was always getting my little girl fingers stuck in the chains of the swing as I dismounted.
I’d hit the ground and look at my dad with the silent cry face… the face kids give their parents before the completely lose it and burst into tears. My dad would invariable come over and try to talk me out of losing it, but I was already halfway into the ugly cry by then. It was then that no one but my mom could handle the cajoling and kissing of my finger. I’d run into the house, screaming like a maniac and clutching my (not even bleeding) finger, looking for my mother who had found just a few moments peace to take a shower or a short nap. I’d force myself into her lap, lift the offending, pained finger, and wait for the mom comfort to blanket me. So good.
Come to think of it, that swing set caused as many injuries as it did smiles.
Come to think of it, jumping off the swing set is always worth the hurt finger.
Come to think of it, this pudding has much the same healing qualities as my mom’s lap.
Milk Chocolate Pudding … holy wow! It’s super simple, brilliantly satisfying, and you can have it as is, or doll it up with lightly sweetened cream and easy homemade raspberry sauce. Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Mother’s Day treats? Yea… I thought so.
Milk Chocolate Pudding
Gourmet, February 2007
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup half and half or heavy cream
4 ounces fine-quality milk chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt in a 2-quart heavy saucepan. Gradually whisk in milk and cream. Bring to a boil over moderately high heat, whisking constantly. Boil, whisking for two minutes. Mixture will be thick. Remove from heat and whisk in chocolate pieces and vanilla extract. Stir until melted and smooth.
Transfer pudding to four or six small dishes. Cover the surface with wax paper, to prevent a skin from forming, and place in the fridge until cool and set, about two hours.
In the meantime, make the whipped cream and raspberry sauce.
To assemble, top the chocolate pudding with whipped cream and raspberry sauce and serve immediately. If you would like to assemble dessert and return it to the fridge, you may want to place the raspberry sauce beneath the whipped cream so it doesn’t bleed as much.
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons powdered sugar.
Whip heavy cream with an electric hand mixer, or in the bowl of a stand mixer until frothy. Add the sugar and continue to whip until soft peaks form. Whip the cream slightly longer if you like a stiffer hold to your whipped cream. Place in the fridge to save for assembly.
Easy Raspberry Sauce
1/2 of a 12-ounce bag frozen raspberries, thawed
1 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoons water
Place the thawed raspberries in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Add sugar and water and mix until the raspberries form a smooth puree. Transfer raspberry puree to a fine mesh strainer fit over a bowl. Press the puree through the strainer, until only the raspberry seeds and a bit of pump remain the the strainer, and a beautiful raspberry sauce is all that’s in the bowl.