|Chocolate pudding with puff pastry hearts|
It doesn't have to be Valentine's Day to have chocolate pudding or puff pastry hearts! This is a simple recipe that takes a little longer than instant pudding, but not much. It does require a little patience as you have to watch and stir so the pudding doesn't burn.
Puff pastry (one sheet makes about 12 -16 hearts, depending on the size you cut them)
beaten egg for pastry wash
1 pint heavy cream (or 2 cups of any % of milk you like)
3 tbsp cornstarch
5 tbsp sugar
4 oz semi- or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
If you're organized you can start with the puff pastry hearts and then do the pudding while they're baking. If you're easily distracted, don't do them simultaneously. ;-)
Puff pastry hearts:
Take puff pastry out of freezer about an hour before you need it. Unwrap and let sit on counter to thaw out a bit. Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll the thawed pastry out and cut the hearts (or any shape) with a cookie cutter or knife. Place on parchment paper, brush with beaten egg and put in freezer for 5 minutes. Bake 10 -12 minutes until puffed and golden. Let cool. (Once cooled I popped them in a freezer bag to store until morning. They don't last long so don't make them days in advance.)
In a medium, flat-bottomed saucepan, combine cornstarch, sugar and salt. Slowly whisk in the milk/cream. Once the lumps are worked out you can pour faster. Over medium heat cook milk, stirring with a whisk to keep milk from burning on bottom. In 10 minutes or so the milk will be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add chocolate, keep stirring until pudding *suddenly* thickens up. (Seriously, it goes from liquid to pudding pretty quickly.) Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.
Pour quickly into a single bowl (if you can eat it all before anyone else gets home) or 4-6 pudding bowls (if you're planning to share).
If you don't like the pudding 'skin' that may form when you don't eat it right away (standing in front of the stove), press plastic wrap right down on the surface of the pudding. Put in fridge to cool.
We added a bit of whipped cream (gilding the lily) and some raspberries for color.
White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032