Better, by far, than a mix . . . Homemade Pudding!

Homemade pudding tastes a whole lot better than a mx, costs less and takes just a little bit longer to make. (How much time does it take to measure sugar, cornstarch, salt and a few other ingredients?)
     The recipe is pretty standard. I have always used the one in Betty Crockers’s New Picture Cookbook, 1961 edition. (Guess it’s is not so new anymore!)
    Add the pudding to dishes and serve it as dessert, either warm or chilled. Use it to fill an 8” or 9” baked pie shell, layer it with cake to create an English trifle, or do what I did -- spoon it into cream puffs.

Chocolate Cream Pudding
1 cup granulated sugar (could reduce to 3/4 cup)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder or 2 squares (2 oz.) of unsweetened chocolate, cut up (I used dark cocoa powder)
2 cups milk (I prefer whole)
2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 teaspoons butter 
1 teaspoons vanilla

1.     Mix sugar, cornstarch, salt, and cocoa (if using chocolate squares, add them with the milk in step 2) in saucepan.
Before mixing the dry ingredients (above) & after mixing (below).
Mixing the sugar with the cornstarch & cocoa helps keep the starch from clumping when liquid is added.

2.     Gradually stir in milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickens and boils. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat.
The pudding has thickened & boiled for 1 minute.
3.     Temper the egg yolks (to keep them from scrambling) by adding a little of the hot mixture to the yolks and mixing thoroughly. Then, gradually stir the tempered yolk mixture into hot mixture.
Adding a little of the hot mixture to the beaten yolks "tempers" them
by gradually introducing them to heat), keeping them from scrambling.
The tempered yolk are then added back to the hot mixture.
4.     Over medium heat, bring the mixture back to boiling; boil 1 minute, stirring constantly.
5.      Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla.
Butter & vanilla have been added.
6.     Serve warm of refrigerate to chill.
If not eating the pudding right away, cover with a sheet of
plastic wrap to keep a "skin" from forming on the surface of the pudding
By the way -- the "skin" is simply a layer of protein that coagulates on the top
of the pudding. It is actually edible but just not very appetizing.
Vanilla Cream Pudding
Follow instructions above but reduce sugar to ½ cup; omit cocoa.

Butterscotch Cream Pudding  
Follow instruction above but use these ingredients . . .
¾ cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
1¼ cups milk
¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
·      Bananas, crushed pineapple (drained) or toasted coconut in vanilla pudding.
·      Toasted walnuts in butterscotch or chocolate.
·      Of course, whipped cream is great on any kind of pudding or pudding filling.

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