Butterscotch and Chocolate pudding swirl, and a comparison.

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Pudding, Pudding, Pudding. Is very similar to my last post, ice cream….whoops, sorry! Well that doesn’t make pudding any less good. Am I right?

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This pudding caused multiple bowls to be scraped clean!

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I promised a comparison. So here we go. Chocolate versus Butterscotch, but that’s not what I meant. I was talking about difference in methods. If you read ahead to the recipe you will see that they are very different. For the chocolate pudding they had you mixing in the thickener (cornstarch) in towards the beginning and cooking it until it thickens. For the butterscotch pudding you made the butterscotch and added the milk to that, heating it. You waited until the end to add the thickener. To thicken it you use egg yolks as well as cornstarch and just dumped all of the milk/butterscotch mixture into the thickener and stirred. It immediately became thick. That was one of my most satisfying cooking experiences. It felt so good to see it become so thick as I stirred it.
Picture break!

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And we are back! Now let’s talk taste and texture. They both had excellent taste. They were rich and flavorful and absolutely heavenly. Obviously they tasted different, I intended to make them that way. Hence the chocolate and butterscotch flavor differences…
The texture is where the difference was very noticeable. The chocolate was smoother, a bit thinner, but not so thin that it wasn’t pudding any longer, it was still thick enough to be a good pudding. The butterscotch was in turn thicker.. Because of the eggs the butterscotch was also richer and more custardy.
Overall I liked the butterscotch pudding better because of the richer, fuller texture.

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Chocolate Pudding

1/4 cup (30 grams) cornstarch
1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 cups (710 ml) whole milk
6 ounces (170 grams) semi- or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (or 1 cup good chocolate chips)
1 teaspoon (5 ml) pure vanilla extract

Combine the cornstarch, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan, Slowly whisk in the milk, in a thin stream at first so that lumps don’t form, then more quickly once the cornstarch mixture is smoothly incorporated. Place over medium-low heat and stir occasionally, scraping the bottom and sides. Use a whisk as necessary should lumps begin to form. After 10 minutes or so (slower over lower heat is better, to give the cornstarch time to cook), before it starts to simmer, the mixture should begin to thicken, enough that it will coat the back of a spoon. Add the chocolate, and continue stirring for another 2 to 4 minutes, until chocolate is fully incorporated and mixture is quite thick. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.

If you’re concerned about lumps: Run mixture through a fine-mesh strainer.

chill until it is cool and set, about 2 to 3 hours.

Put plastic on top of the pudding and smooth it gently against the surface before refrigerating.

Smitten Kitchen

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Butterscotch Pudding

12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 oz by weight)
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar (3 1/2 oz by weight)
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon table salt
1 cup heavy cream
2 1/4 cups whole milk
4 egg large egg yolks
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon dark rum (I skipped this)

In a large saucepan, combine butter, both sugars, water, corn syrup, lemon juice and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved and butter is melted. Bring to a full rolling boil and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes (caramel will be about 240F). Immediately reduce to medium-low, until caramel develops a steady stream of lazy bubbles. Cook, stirring frequently, until mixture is color of dark peanut butter, smells ever-so-slightly burnt and registers 300F, 12-16 minutes more.
Remove from heat and carefully add 1/4 c cream (it will bubble and steam), swirling to incorporate. When bubbles subside, whisk vigorously, scraping into corners, until completely smooth, at least 30 seconds. Over medium heat, whisk in remaining cream until smooth. Whisk in 2 c milk until smooth, remembering to scrape into the corners of the pan to collect any remaining caramel.
In microwave, (or in a small pan on the stove-top) bring remaining 1/4 c milk to a simmer, 30-45 seconds. Whisk egg yolks and cornstarch together in a large heat-safe bowl until smooth. Gradually whisk in hot milk until smooth; set aside at room temperature.
Return saucepan to medium-high heat and bring back to a full rolling boil, whisking frequently. When bubbles begin to climb sides of pan, immediately dump entire pan into bowl with yolk mixture (do not add slowly). Whisk vigorously and thoroughly for 10-15 seconds. Add vanilla and rum and whisk to combine. Spray a disc of parchment paper cut to fit the bowl with non-stick spray and press onto surface of pudding. Refrigerate until cold and set, 3 hours or more. Whisk until smooth before serving.
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