Switching to the metric system is a serious pain. Hopping over the pond, as the expression goes, requires conversion tables of all sorts. Clothing sizes, highway speed, temperature (I mean, when someone remarks, 'man, it's gotta be 35 degrees out there!' it takes a newbie awhile to start thinking in Celsius), and of course cooking.
There are tables for weight, volume, and even the concept of a tablespoon can be different! (I believe the Aussies have a got a 20ml tablespoon, compared to the standard 15ml, and according to some cooking sites it may even be more complex than that.)
But once you master the metric, a whole new world opens up. All those cookbooks I paged through but stopped myself from buying as soon as the milliliters and grams appeared under my gaze are now at my disposal. And, Nigella, thank you. Your cookbooks, laden with the now unintimidating metric, have re-inspired me to crank up my teeny-tiny Euro oven and play with food ideas I hadn't even heard of back in the states.
One common desert in her books is pudding. And I do know pudding. Chocolate pudding specifically. So when I stumbled upon the Forever Nigella blogging event this morning 'Seduced by Chocolate' I knew it had to be pudding. Of course, regular pudding has little seduction power, but deep rich Italian pudding Budino Di Cioccolato, well, the seduction just flies out of those words.
I called the hubs, poor guy was working on a Sunday, and put in my post-work grocery stop order: heavy cream, full fat milk, and the best dark chocolate he could find. The sweet reward to follow was implicit. He needed no convincing.
Continue to Recipe...
Budino Di Cioccolato (Chocolate Pudding)
Serves 4 according to Nigella, but 2 in our home.
Eat with Moscato d'Asti
Adapted from Nigella Express. Note: Since vanilla extract is hard to find here in Czechland, I've substituted vanilla sugar for the normal sugar and cut the vanilla extract. Also, I use potato starch as it is more common here than cornflour, as the original recipe calls for.
1 cup (250 ml) full fat milk
1/2 cup (125 ml) heavy cream
4 Tb (60g) vanilla sugar
1 Tb potato starch
5 Tb (35g) cocoa powder
2 Tb boiling water
2 egg yolks
2 oz (60g) best quality dark chocolate
Get a bit of water boiling and finely chop your dark chocolate bar and set aside for later. Heat the milk and cream in a saucepan, careful not to boil.
In another saucepan (not on the heat yet), mix the sugar, starch, and cocoa powder together. Add the 2 Tb hot water and stir vigorously until it's mixed to a thick paste. Add the egg yolks, stirring after each addition. Remove the milk from the heat and stick this chocolate paste pot on the heat. Pour the milk into the chocolate mix, and whisk well. Simmer on low and keep whisking (on and off) for a few minutes. Take off heat, and add the chocolate pieces. Whisk well until all is smooth.
Pour into little cups, and (here is Nigella's key pudding tip) wrap with plastic wrap so that the plastic is touching the top of the pudding as much as possible. This will prevent the skin from forming (lack of oxygen I suppose). Into the fridge they go.
If you'd like a truly Seductive Sunday afternoon, once they've cooled, eat with a glass of sweet Italian frizzante. Luscious.
Dobrou Chut'/ Enjoy!