I had a pleasant lunch with a friend on Friday afternoon. It was an unplanned meal so my menu was within limitations of what was available in my fridge – one radish and some brinjals. I decided on radish sambar and Baigan ki sabzi. I have never made brinjals when I’ve invited someone over for lunch or dinner as most people dont eat brinjals. Thankfully my friend likes them and she enjoyed the sambar as well. I did not go out of the way to make something special. So I thought “Ok, lunch is the usual so why not make the dessert interesting?”
I started boiling 2 cups of milk really not knowing what I was going to make. Soon I added brown sugar to sweeten it, followed by my favorite cocoa powder. What next? Let me set it with something…. I didnt want to use the flavored vegetarian gelation as it would clash with the taste of the cocoa powder. So I thought of using china grass/ agar agar to set it. I have never really used this grass but I remember reading in some blogs that a tablespoon is enought to set a cup of milk. So thats what went into the mysterious boiling pot. Finally, I poured this liquid into jelly molds and forgot about it.
When it was time for desserts I started trying to de-mold the pudding. Thankfully it was set enough to hold and came out easily too. I garnished it with chocolate sauce and chocolate vermicelli. My friend suggested that this can be made for Birthday parties as well. I think thats a good idea as its a self-setting pudding. Imagine boiling 50 pudding molds for a party, that would mean a free sauna bath in the comfort of your kitchen 🙂
- 2 cups of milk
- 1.5 tablespoons of china grass / agar agar
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1.5 tablespoons brown sugar (or as per taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
- Boil the milk. Add sugar and cocoa powder. Mix well.
- Add china grass. Stir well till it dissolves.
- Turn off the heat and add vanilla essence.
- Strain into jelly molds. Allow them to come to room temperature and then refrigerate.
The same pudding can be made in other flavors like caramel or coffee –
Caramel : Heat sugar in mold till it caramelizes. If you have caramel sauce pour it into the milk while it boils. Now pour the pudding mix into the molds and set.
Coffee : Add instant coffee powder to the milk after turning off the heat and mix well.