We can’t let Easter go by without at least one package of Peeps – those marshmallow chicks (and now bunnies) that were a favourite in our Easter baskets as kids. Last week we floated them in cups of from-scratch chocolate pudding, and they were quite at home there. If you want to try a more watery effect for your chicks to “swim” in, try a batch of vanilla pudding, tinted with blue food colouring. We were hankering for chocolate – a natural craving around Easter time…
Chocolate pudding is about as easy to make from scratch, using cocoa and cornstarch, as it is to make from a mix. You’re going to use milk anyway – when you think about it, packaged pudding mixes are terribly overpriced. And once you try the real thing, you’ll be hooked on the flavour difference.
While your pudding is still warm, nestle a Peep into it – even the bunnies look like they’re doing the backstroke.
Real Chocolate Pudding with Peeps
1/2 cup (125 mL) sugar
1/3 cup (80 mL) cocoa
3 Tbsp. (45 mL) cornstarch
2 cups (500 mL) milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
1 tsp. (5 mL) vanilla
1 pkg. Peeps (one sleeve)
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, cocoa, cornstarch and salt. Stir in about a cup of the milk and whisk until the mixture is smooth and well blended, then whisk in the remaining milk. Set the pan over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly, for about 5 minutes or until the mixture bubbles and thickens. Continue to cook the pudding for another minute.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the chocolate and vanilla. Let it sit for a few minutes to let the chocolate melt, and stir it until it’s smooth.
Divide the pudding between 5 small bowls, and set a Peep on top of each, nestling it slightly into the soft pudding. Let it cool for about 20 minutes and serve it warm, or put it in the fridge for at least half an hour (or several hours) and serve cold. Serves 5.