Because I know you care, guess what? I finally have internet access. You might not care, but I do. Back to knowing my schedule (Google Calender), back to reading blogs (Google Reader), back to watching "The Office" (NBC.com) and back to mind-numbing, evening-unwinding internet surfing.
While the internet guy was in and out of my house this afternoon, he noticed my basil plant in my kitchen window and we started talking about food. Turns out Digis Dude is quite the foodie. I learned so much from this man within the 30 minutes of our food conversation. Like if you take cut veggies to work to snack on, put a fresh garlic clove in the bottom of the container and it will lightly flavor your veggies. Brilliant. And he gave me some tips on where the best Thai food is in Utah Valley and where to get great fish sauce. All of this from the man who climbs on roofs in rain or shine. Speaking of that, the poor soul started the job with the sun shining and ended it with it pounding sleet.
What a downer this winter/spring/bull crap weather is. I talked to my sister in-law in Southern California yesterday and in the background, I could hear a lawn mower outside her house. A lawn mower means that grass is growing and that means it is green and that means the sun is shining enough to where the grass can grow. Sun shining, what a fantasy. While I will be happy to have warmer weather, I will be sad to let go of comforting foods until next fall. I consider chocolate pudding to be one of those comforting foods. Chocolate, smooth, cold and creamy. Sure, you eat pudding in the summer, it just makes sense, but I prefer it in colder months when one can use all the comfort and optimism available. Yes, chocolate pudding is optimistic. What food isn't optimistic? Vanilla pudding. Drab, boring and not living to it's full potential. Vanilla pudding is just not a go-getter. Why be vanilla when you can be chocolate?
If a bowl of chocolate pudding just isn't going to cut it for you, spoon it into cream puffs. Sounds tempting eh?
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp espresso powder, optional
2 1/2 cups milk
4 egg yolks
2 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Place a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, off heat, whisk together sugar, cornstarch, salt, cocoa powder and espresso powder, if using. Very gradually, whisk in milk, being sure to dissolve cornstarch. Whisk in egg yolks.
Whisking constantly, cook over medium heat until the first large bubble forms and sputters. Reduce heat to low, still whisking, cook 1 minute. Remove from heat and immediately pour through sieve into bowl. Stir butter and vanilla into hot pudding.
Place plastic wrap directly on surface of pudding, to prevent skin from forming. Chill at least 3 hours. Before serving, whisk pudding until smooth and divide among serving dishes.
Yields 4 servings.