Creating a blog was out of the question for a long time for me, as measuring everything in the kitchen was like biting into an eggshell. I enjoy cooking and don’t want to waste even a slightest bit of enjoyment in that small world of mine. But little did I know that everything will change, when my husband came home with the Oscar nominated film ‘Julie and Julia’( a real life story) where Julie Powell (part played by Amy Adams) challenged herself to make all the 524 recipes from Julia Child's cook book ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ and blogging all her experiences (The Julie/Julia Project). It was an inspiring movie. A few days later when we were discussing this casually with a friend of ours over tea…everything changed dramatically…..” How about you making at least half of it in one year? Not French but your own. 262 recipes that will inspire others and present it as a blog?” For a minute my mind traveled faster than light… With an experience as a helper in my mother in laws kitchen for 6 years followed by a three year everyday struggle to satisfy the palate of my foodie husband, if I cannot do it then why should I cook? But on the other side with an experience in English literature extending no more than expanding outline stories in English grammar class when I was 18 and two small kids that come in handy at times, will a commitment for the next one year work? Anyway my ‘cook's ego’ didn’t allow me to say no...

So my friends …here I am opening my recipe book, trying to perfect and present 262 recipes in the coming 365 days….A Challenge that will of course tastes good. Come.. Have a walk with me along my journey.. Cheering and inspiring….Forgiving and tolerating…Testing and tasting….for ‘A Tasty Challenge’

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Monday, July 5, 2010

Caramel Custard Pudding

Recipe No: 51
This is the all time favorite dessert of both me and my husband. Traditionally this is prepared by steaming. But here I felt that this is much easier if we bake it in a water bath in the oven. This is a very easy yet delicious recipe.
Ingredients                                                  Serves 8-10
To make the Caramel
  • Sugar………………………1/2 Cup
To make the custard
  • Milk…………………………3 Cups
  • Egg………………………….5
  • Sugar………………………1 ¼ Cups
  • Vanilla essence………...1 Teaspoon
Method of Preparation
  1. Grease the bottom and sides of an oven proof dish with butter.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350˚F/180˚C.
  3. In a dry pan on medium heat, add the sugar to make the Caramel. Don’t stir or raise the heat. When the sides of the sugar starts to caramelize just swirl the pan. If you stir, there are more chances for the Caramel to become gritty. Once the sugar is almost dissolved then you can stir.
  4. When the Caramel attains a uniform brown color, pour it into the greased  dish and give it a swirl to get a uniform Caramel layer as possible. As the Caramel solidifies fast and the pan is already greased, it will be difficult to spread the Caramel evenly. This is not a big problem because as it bakes it will melt and will become even. Keep it aside.
  5. In a pan beat the Eggs as well as possible and then add Sugar and Milk.  Put this on a medium flame and stir till the sugar is melted. No need to stir longer. This step will take only a minute.
  6. Add Vanilla essence to the custard and mix.
  7. Pour this to the pan with the caramel bottom through a sieve. Using a sieve is important as it will remove the solid egg particles, if there are any.
  8. Take another big deep ovenproof dish and place the dish with the pudding in it. Add boiling water to the large pan so that the water will come up to the  half of the pudding pan. (Water Bath)
  9. Keep this in the middle of the preheated oven and bake for 1 to 1 ½ hours. (The time depends on your oven) The pudding should be firm along the sides (an inserted knife will come out clean) and still wriggly in the middle. This will set in time. Take the pudding out of the water bath and let it cool before keeping it in the fridge.
  10. Once cooled thoroughly for at least 8 hours, run a knife through the sides of the pudding and invert it into a bigger pan so that the caramel side is on the top. Take special care not to loose any of the juices coming out of the pudding.
  11. Cut into desired shapes and serve it with the juices.
Notes:The color of the Caramel deserves some attention. The darker the color, the sharper the Caramel taste and the tartness will be. Please note the color of the Carmel in the picture. That is not tart at all...the way I like the most. But if you prefer it a bit tart, go ahead and make it a bit darker... (That is the way my husband like it!!!)
Instead of making one big pudding you can make individual single serving portions in small oven proof dishes.
If you don’t have an oven you can make this by steaming. Set up a steamer and place the pudding dish after covering its top with an Aluminum foil. (No need to set a water bath here)
If you are planning to bake, setting a water bath is essential as they do three things. It will  save the milk from curdling. It will help bake the pudding as evenly as possible and it will start to cook the pudding the moment it touches the oven.

Make it, enjoy the deliciousness and
serve it to your family with love.


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