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Ultra Chocolate Pudding

ultra chocolate puddingI had brunch with friends this past weekend. It was the first time we’d been together in ages, so we went to our favorite spot by the park and ordered plates of French toast and omelets. Over the last few years, some of us have moved far away, some not so far. Careers have begun to solidify. One friend brought their young son who sat at the head of the table in a highchair, teething on coffee creamers and smiling between bites of his pancakes. We were newer versions of ourselves in the same old context, and yet, it felt just as comforting as our lazy Saturday brunches years ago.

Seeing them sent me on a nostalgia bender for most of Sunday, drawing on sources of comfort from years before—indie music circa 2005, old novels, and of course, food. Maybe I was looking for remedies to stress and the dreary end of March, when the Brooklyn sky alternates between gray with clouds and gray with clouds and freezing rain. Maybe I was trying to recapture what I’ve been lacking in recent months: moments when I’m completely at ease.

That’s all to say that I have a pudding recipe for you. It’s a dessert to make on a Sunday afternoon when all you want is to feel content, with a spoon in one hand and a cup of decadent chocolate and fresh whipped cream in the other.

milkI call it Ultra Chocolate Pudding because I increased the amount of chocolate by a third from the recipe I adapted. The result is a thick pudding with a near-custard consistency. Continue Reading →

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Mexican Hot Cocoa

I went to the Renegade Holiday Craft Fair last month where dozens of Brooklyn’s most talented makers set up booths by the Williamsburg waterfront. Between marveling at adorable prints and sewing kits and vintage plates with dog decals, I bought a cup of Mexican hot cocoa from Chickpea and Olive. A whole cup of hot cocoa is usually too heavy for me, but Chickpea and Olive’s vegan version with soy milk was perfect. It had just the right amount of spice too: enough to warm the palate, but not overwhelming.

Inspired by that craft fair cocoa, I made my own version this afternoon with ingredients I found in my cupboard.

A few tablespoons of hot cocoa powder, some spices, and a splash of vanilla later, and I had my own batch of Mexican hot cocoa. You can too! You may have everything you need at this very moment. Continue Reading →

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Recipe Rookie: Chocolate Truffles

As I was finishing up my holiday shopping in SoHo in early December, I sensed my blood sugar levels taking a turn for the worst. The answer was pit stop at Kee’s Chocolates on Thompson Street for a few truffles and a lychee macaroon. While not the healthiest afternoon snack, it was the perfect indulgence for a Friday afternoon in Manhattan. 

Kee’s Chocolate’s got me thinking about truffle making and how involved it may be. It’s really just chocolate ganache with a few flavorings dipped in melted chocolate, right? How difficult could it be? I decided to find out last week. Continue Reading →