I take pride in being surrounded by a great bunch of friends and honestly, I couldn’t ask for better. After a rather rough week, I was given a “small” care package to keep me going, or so I thought. And we all know that small care packages are rarely ever small. They look so well put together, packed in color-coordinated sheets and with a heavy hand handling the sparkles department. Alliterations, Alliterations… And believe me when I say that 90% of the time, a small tear will lead to the literal downfall of everything that’s propped up in that dainty, little basket.
My care package looked nothing like the stereotypical ones that you crave on Instagram and Tumblr. My friends made sure to keep the glitter and sparkles away but put in quite a bit of effort to add the right kind of colors. I was at work and had it looked like the merch for a unicorn parade, I wouldn’t have taken it in with me. To my luck, the package came in a brown paper bag, that was in turn placed in a white cloth bag. Not a bad combination, to be honest. I could only compare it to an undercover agent with the highest clearance in a war-struck nation. The goodies in it posing as the credentials for clearance and the undercover garb to hide its value; not that the people around me would run to grab frozen yogurt but, meh, my friends assumed.
I knew when I received it that I wouldn’t be able to peek into it and pull things out. It was jam-packed, and given my history, I’d only end up ripping the paper bag along its crease. Disappointing, I know. So I left it just the way it was, only taking little tubs of fruit yogurt out, giving it to those that wanted a taste. At the end of the day, I pulled it out of the mini fridge and dug in ASAP. Under eight tubs of yogurt (a lot) a dark knight in shiny wrapper appeared. Yes. Yes. Dark chocolate. It was carefully wedged (or carelessly, I’ll never know) next to a large carton of soy milk. Keeping it company were two boxes of sugar-free cookies and a bag of shelled pistachios. Perfect. I gave half of the chocolate bar to a friend and took the rest home with me.
Save for the cookies and pistachio nuts, everything else had a short shelf life. Where I come from, dishes are heavily flavored with ghee and butter. My family wasn’t so fond of soy milk and I had to change their minds (Plus, I wanted to finish the carton within three days, so…). As a dessert fanatic, I decided to play with the sweetness of the flavored soy milk. Adding a little whiskey to the mix wouldn’t hurt, right?
Equipped with Captain America’s determination to save Bucky Barnes in CA: Civil War, I set out to make the best pudding that my family had ever had. I frantically laid out all ingredients on the counter, making the recipe up in my mind as I glanced over them. And after heating, mixing, pouring and setting, I was finally done.
I made my friends proud—I had the silkiest, jiggliest and an accidentally vegan pudding before my eyes! Thank God for that! (And Captain America’s determination)
If you want to recreate it or something similar, here you go:
For the pudding:
- Two cups of soy milk
- Two and a half tablespoons of cornstarch(you can substitute this with tapioca starch)
- Sugar to taste
- Four pinches of heavenly patience
For the whiskey sauce: (Optional)
- 60 ml of whiskey
- Candy sugar(you can substitute it with some brown sugar to add a little more depth to the sauce)
- Crushed almonds
- Take a flat-bottomed pan and heat your favorite soy milk. Stir regularly.
- Take a small bowl and mix your preferred starch with some room temperature water.
- A little before the milk starts to boil, add in your starch mixture while stirring continuously.
- Once it thickens, pour it into ramekins or any cute cups you have in your kitchen drawers. Let them set in your refrigerator.
- For the whiskey sauce, pour whiskey into a pan and heat it along with the candy sugar or brown sugar.
- Cook it down so that the alcohol evaporates. Take it off the heat and add crushed almonds to the hot liquid. The almonds will steep in it and make it a little cloudy, but that’s okay.
- People prefer to add starch to the concoction to make it thick but I’m not a fan of that. The thin sauce works well with the delicate pudding. If you like a more viscous sauce, you can always add some thickener. Just make sure you cook it down properly so that it doesn’t smell like uncooked flour.
There are a few things to remember during the process.
The water content in your soy milk matters when you add starch to it. The brand I used required the previously mentioned amount of starch. Tapioca starch might leave the finished pudding a little on the stickier side.
Use whiskey with good notes. You’ll be looking for flavor in your whiskey sauce, so pick one with warm notes and good taste.
The brown sugar should be enough to add flavor to the sauce if you can’t find candy sugar. Candy sugar or Khadi sakar/ khadi shakkar is a form of sugar that has many ayurvedic benefits, so see if you can get your hands on that.
As I couldn’t add an image of my phone (blame the data transfer errors) I found one that looked very identical to the pudding I made.
Image Source: Annielicious Food – Blogger