My mom made pudding when I was a kid. I still remember standing in our kitchen in the house that I grew up in and watching Mom work her magic. It was evening and I still remember the way the kitchen looked at night because we had florescent lights in our kitchen and they cast a certain look on everything. Man, now I'm getting all nostalgic and I'm remembering so many things that happened in that kitchen!
What I seem to remember, though, was that Mom mixed the warm pudding with applesauce. I was little the last time I saw her do this, though, so I asked my sister about it and she said she didn't remember this and it sounded gross. I told her to ask Mom about it and sure enough, I remembered correctly. Mom did, in fact, do this. But, she said, you have to do it when the pudding is hot.
When I'm pregnant, for some reason, I start thinking back to memories I have of my Mom from when I was little. This happened to me with Gideon and it's happening again this time around. And mostly how it's manifested itself is in food. That is, I've been craving foods that my Mom used to make when I was a little kid. I can only assume that the pudding memory is what has ignited my recent obsession with home made pudding.
3 Tbs. butter
1/3 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. whipping cream
1 1/2 c. milk, divided
1/2 tsp. salt
3 Tbs. cornstarch
1 tsp. vanilla
Melt butter in a sauce pan and add brown sugar. Cook, stirring, until melted and bubbly. Gradually stir in cream. Stir over low head until the butterscotch is dissolved. Add salt and 1 1/4 c. milk. Blend and remove from heat. In a small bowl mix cornstarch and 1/4 c. milk until smooth. Stir slowly into pudding. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium-high head until pudding comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and cook for one minute. Remove from head and add vanilla. Pour into custard cups and refrigerate till set.
Now this basic recipe that I've been using since I got married is from Joy of Cooking. It's a good recipe and I always get wonderful results with it. I found that the directions were unclear about how long to cook the butter and sugar but I've noted the longer you cook it the better flavor, but of course if you cook it too long it will burn. I've also messed with the amount of salt as I think a bit more salt makes for a tastier pudding. To avoid lumps you MUST be sure the corn starch and milk are well blended before adding to pudding and STIR CONSTANTLY while thickening. Also, I've often substituted milk for the cream and it's slightly less rich but just as delicious.
Happy pudding eating!