Saturday, 6 March 2010

Deliciously Dark Chocolate Pudding

The principal cookbook of my Single Life was Moosewood Restaurant's Low-Fat Favourites.

Until I began my studies in the USA, I was most tremendously fit and slim. As long as I had a good-paying job, I had a gym membership. And as long as I was studying in Canada, I had access to the the university athletic centre. But in the USA, I discovered I couldn't really afford a gym and would have had to pay a heavy fee to use the school's athletic centre, so I worked out my frustrations with Messrs. Ben & Jerry instead. Alas. I got out of the fitness habit and can even be seen eating what my husband calls potato crisps which, believe me, never happened between 1996 and 2005.

During the turn of the century, when I was definitely Single but not yet Seraphic despite being most tremendously slim (which was not, it turned out, the secret to happiness), I worked out almost every day and ate very little fat indeed. And my principal dessert was Moosewood's Dark Chocolate Pudding.

The recipe says it serves 4, but actually I ate it in two big helpings of 218 calories each. I would pour half from the pot into a bowl and put the bowl in the fridge to cool. And I would pour the rest into another bowl and eat it hot. Yummy, yum, yum.

I can just see my skinny self sitting alone in my scrupulously tidy bedsit, crosslegged on my folded up futon eating that pudding. Gosh, I was tidy then too. Slim and tidy yet sad. Dear me. I did not have my big Seraphic Single Revelation until 2006, you see.

Well, anyway, here is one of the joys of my pre-Seraphic Single Life:

Deliciously Dark Chocolate Pudding

3 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups skim milk*
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1. Combine cornstarch, sugar and cocoa in a saucepan.

2. Add the milk and stir until smooth.

3. Cook on medium heat, stirring CONSTANTLY (this is the boring part) until the pudding comes to a boil.

4. Lower the heat and gently simmer, stirring continuously, for 3 or 4 minutes.

5. Stir in the vanilla.

6. Pour the vanilla into bowls and either put the bowls into the fridge for 2 hours to chill and set, or eat the pudding hot. Garnish with raspberries, if you like them.

*If you are not madly calorie counting, you can use 1% or 2% or even whole milk.


Anonymous said...

Thank you from still single KS. It looks delicious.

Catholic Bibliophagist said...

I can attest, having made it before, that this pudding is delicious. However, it can be improved by adding one ounce of good bittersweet chocolate, stirring until it melts, just before you add the vanilla.

To improve the flavor even further, use 2% milk and stir in 1 tablespoon real butter with the chocolate. It will no longer be low-fat, but it will taste very, very good.

(Now that I'm diabetic I only make this once in a while and I use Splenda instead of sugar. It's still pretty good, even though I dislike the flavor of Splenda and almost never use it. I pour the pudding into four custard cups and only allow myself to eat one per day. This is not easy because when you live alone all four servings sit in the refrigerator, siren-like, and call your name. Diabetes is helping me to learn the virtue of temperance.)

Catholic Bibliophagist said...

Oh, and I forgot to mention that post-diabetes I substitute unsweetened baking chocolate for the bittersweet. Cuts down the carbs even more.

rhiannon said...

I made it for our girls night tonight :) We're singing Lenten hymns and having dessert! Thanks Seraphic! :)

Seraphic said...

Yay, girls' night! Wish I could be there, rhiannon!

theobromophile said...

Looks absolutely delicious! Thank you! Note to self: get unsweetened cocoa powder. (I also plan on making red velvet cupcakes for my middle school Science Team, so the cocoa powder is on my shopping list anyway. :) )

During the turn of the century, when I was definitely Single but not yet Seraphic despite being most tremendously slim (which was not, it turned out, the secret to happiness), I worked out almost every day and ate very little fat indeed.

Aren't you being a bit hard on your turn-of-the-millennium (sounds more dramatic) self? While neither fitness, slimness, nor neatness bring happiness, there's a good chance that you would have been even less happy without those things. The runner's high certainly helps one's mood, and being fit and tidy gives one a bit of ownership over one's life.

Right now, I'm at about the age you were then, and let me tell you: when my house is a mess and when I feel gross (gaining weight and out of shape), I just feel worse - and much more hopeless - about being Single and underemployed. If I let it go for too long, there are the feelings of "Of course I'm Single and underemployed; look at me! look at my desk! It's hopeless! Why bother trying?". That is a bad place to be.

FYI: your sixth direction should probably read "pudding," not "vanilla."