The Accidental Chocolate Pudding

When you give me a recipe I use it as an inspiration. While scanning through the ingredient list, a million light bulbs flash through my mind and take me in different directions, sometimes bulbs will burn out, but more often than not, wonderful ideas 'ping pong-ing' around in my mind and then a crisp and clear vision of the dish emerges. So when fellow food bloggers ask me to join a project or guest post, I have the best of intentions, only the end product would have a slight if any resemblance to the original concept. I do not wish to disappoint my friends with a missed deadline or altogether missing the point, so often I bow out.

What started as a #baketogether tweet by Abby Dodge and a Chocolate Truffle Tart you will find on her site, as an inspiration, became a deconstructed no bake frozen chocolate ice cream tart. Making a base for the ice cream with eggs and throwing in some of my Petit Beurre, Cocoa and Coconut Chocolate Balls 'dough' to emulate the crust (or cookie dough ice cream), and that is the deconstructed part or...use the petit beurre as a no bake crust, see tart shell in the post and fill it with a churned chocolate ice cream for a frozen tart dessert. The petit beurre crust has wine in it so that takes care of the liquor in the original recipe, you can also add booze to the ice cream base. Only thing is when I made the ice cream base I stopped short, it was perfect, smooth and silky, a delicious chocolate pudding!
If you read my posts regularly, you read about the first door I made Jonathan dismantle, for a higher food styling and photography cause. First was Hulled Yellow Mung Bean Dahl, A Poor Cabinet Door & A Lost Mojo, and yes, you guessed right, this one is a second door in this continuing saga of my mission to turn our house into rubble. I am sorry to report there wasn't much resistance or mutiny on Jonathan's part. I would have loved to report his snarky remarks, but promise soon something will pop up!I don't want to give Jonathan a bad rap you all know he is all around nice guy!
Food styling brings me to the details in the photographs. The other day I walked over to my neighbor's house to bring her the salted caramel ice cream I made. We just can't consume everything I make and the freezer has not an inch of space left, besides I am often a good neighbor at least that way. Well, my neighbor, I would even venture to say is a talented carpenter. She salvages old wood and bark and even antlers shed by bucks in the woods in our back yard, and builds furniture or takes on small remodeling projects incorporating these materials. She also has many beautiful dishes full of color and whimsy and trunks of vintage laces from estate sales and some of her travels. You will see how I incorporated the fabric and lace I borrowed from her for the photo shoot. Look at photos to see how dainty the lace is at the body not the edges. I layered them for the depth and effect I wanted to achieve. I also am fortunate with Northern exposure, as much as I love the morning natural light, I love the eery natural light I get in the afternoons and therefore the photos aren't modified at all.
I could have poured the pudding into the no bake petit beurre crust but my guys liked the pudding so much, I truly deconstructed, side by side!

Chocolate Pudding
Ingredients:
1 Cup whipping cream
1 Cup milk
3/4 Cups sugar
1 Teaspoon vanilla
50gr/1.76oz  cocoa powder (I used a scale)
55gr/1.94oz bittersweet chocolate. I used mini morsels (I used a scale)
4 egg yolks

Optional:
1. 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch
2. To garnish: toasted or untoasted coconut flakes (depending on personal taste)

Directions:
1. In a sauce pan, off the heat,  mix sugar minus two tablespoons, whipping cream, vanilla and milk well together. If using cornstarch add it at this point and mix, until dissolved.
2. Still off the heat, add the cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate and mix with milk/whipping cream mixture.
3. In a a separate bowl whisk in the egg yolk and beat with two tablespoons of sugar until pale.
4. Bring the sauce pan with milk/whipping cream and chocolate/cocoa mixture to simmer on medium heat while whisking. Don't let it boil, keep it just under boiling.
3. Once simmered add few tablespoons of simmered liquid into egg yolks and whisk so it won't curdle/cook into a chocolate omelet. The process is called tempering.
4. Once tempered the egg yolks, add the yolks to the sauce pan on the stove and constantly whisk with chocolaty milk mixture, over medium heat until thickens to a desired consistency.
5. Take off the heat, strain and let cool. Once cooled store in refrigerator until serving.
6. Scoop into individual dishes and garnish with coconut flakes if desired before serving.

Cook's notes:
1. I didn't make mine with cornstarch. It gives any dish a slight after taste. In certain dishes I don't mind but I wanted the pure rich chocolate flavor in this one. If you desire extra thick consistency than 1 tablespoon is in good measure.
2. If you wish to serve this as an ice cream, chill for at least three hours in the refrigerator and then churn according to ice cream machine manufacturer's directions.
3. Can fill Petit Beurre shell with either pudding, ice cream, or serve side by side.