Thursday, March 22, 2012

A little of this and a little of that.

Our house was full of land mines--leprechaun traps--this weekend.  For the last three years at least the kids have made traps, and most of the time I forget and end up racing around in the middle of the night or heading off to an unearthly early  morning Walmart run to get something for the trap.

This year hubby was home, so he got involved and between Adam making traps ALL over the house, and Mommy having to go on a moss hunt whilst walking the pooch, our house was a veritable obstacle course of sticks, boxes, water, styrofoam, dirt, and moss.  

Here's Julia's:

The sign says, "GOLD in the hill!"  The unlucky leprechaun climbs up the ladder and onto what seems to be a solid, moss covered roof, only to discover that there's nothing under the moss, thus falling through and into the wooden box.

Adam had a number of traps set about the house.  This is the one he made for school:

He was convinced that he would actually see  a leprechaun, due to the anti-magic electrical field, but unfortunately the leprechaun somehow escaped--although he did leave a mint thin behind.

In other news.  I made chocolate pudding from scratch for the first time in years.  And it was so good I made it again.  And THAT was so good I made butterscotch.  It's a sickness, really.  

I tried to take some shots, but it's hard to hold the camera steady in no light with one hand while stirring in the other.  So I'm not going to show them all!

So.  Here's how to make chocolate pudding.  J said it smells out of this world and tastes like melted brownies.  So check it out!

You'll need:
1 cup sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 squares unsweetened chocolate OR 6 Tbsp cocoa and 2 Tbsp shortening (which is what I used, since I didn't have any unsweetened chockie.  How is that possible?)
2 cups milk
1 beaten egg
2 Tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla

Put the sugar, cornstarch, and chocolate (or cocoa/shortening) in a heavy saucepan.  Be sure to sift the cornstarch and cocoa to minimize lumps.  You're welcome!  OK.  Gradually whisk in 2 cups of milk (preferably whole milk).  Cook at medium temp stirring constantly until comes to a rolling boil.  Don't be tempted to do turn up the temp or stop stirring.  You'll end up with curdled milk and/or lumpy pudding.  Not so good.  Just be patient.  Grab a book and read while you stir, if you must do anything at all other than daydream.  Once it's boiling, cook for 2 minutes longer.  

At this point, you'd drink it, if you could.  Thick and yummy...  Mmmm...chocolate.


Next is important.  Gradually pour a bit of the hot mixture into the beaten egg and mix well.  

If you miss this step in tempering the egg, when you pour the egg into the pot it'll end up scrambled.  Not so appealing.  OK.  So you've tempered your egg.  Now pour the egg/choc mix into the pot and cook another 2 minutes. 

Add the butter and vanilla. Stir well.  Pour into dessert bowls. Done!

For butterscotch, omit the chocolate of course.  Reduce sugar to 3/4 cup and use brown sugar instead of white.  Add 3 Tbsp butter instead of two.  I found the butterscotch pudding to be a bit too sweet--but it was still good.  

For plain vanilla, do as for butterscotch, but use white sugar and only 2 Tbsp butter at the end.

So--go try it!  If you haven't made pudding from scratch before, it will completely spoil you from having it any other way.  Which reminds me that there's still some left over whole milk in the fridge, and I'm feeling a chocolate urge coming on...

So see ya!!

1 comment:

Chris O said...

Wait I need to get a spoon!!!! I love chocolate pudding!!! But only from scratch! I knew, just knew there were others out there like me who make things from scratch!!!! I bet I can top your chocolate pudding recipe! HA! Although I have to say they both sound somewhat similar.