Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Chocolate-Macadamia Pudding (for a Dinner Party)

It was a long weekend here in Ontario in celebration of "Family Day", so this past Sunday night Paul and I hosted the first ever M&P Dinner Party.

It was kind of exciting, because even though we have owned our kitchen table for six years, this dinner party marked the first time that we used our table extender. However it is also kind of depressing, because hosting a dinner party for the first time called to mind our rapidly increasing age and the fact that once upon a time parties at our house featured an entirely liquid diet.

Five years ago, when I was working on our wedding registry, my mom encouraged me to get enough place settings for twelve people. At the time I was 22 years old and "dinner" consisted of delivered pizza slices on paper towels. The thought of needing twelve fancy plates for anything seemed pretty absurd. In those days, I could not seriously envision a time in my life where I would be interested in not only using my oven, but serving a meal that I myself cooked to anyone whose wellbeing I cared for.

Five years ago, the going rate of friendship involved a case of beer and an opened bag of chips. My friends are good people and would probably still be fine with this arrangement and that is why they are my friends. But all the same, I made them an actual dinner on Sunday night.

Avocado Enchiladas and Mexican rice were the main. Taken together that is a somewhat spicy meal and so I wanted dessert to be something that would put out the fire. So, instead of my usual cake or cupcakes, I made pudding instead - something I haven't done since the days of instant Jell-O pudding.

As it turns out, regular pudding is pretty darn easy to make too. It may not be instant, but calling it almost-instant is a fair assessment.

The recipe comes from Vegan with a Vengeance, but you can also find it here. It involves just a handful of ingredients and is done and chilling in the fridge within twenty minutes.

It's pretty tasty on its own, but I wanted to get a little fancy because, after all, this was my first time using my full wedding flatware set - which sounds exciting but really is not, as I picked the most plain and inexpensive plates in Home Outfitters. Either way, I made the executive decision to top each pudding glass with some Macadamia Creme (also from Vegan with a Vengeance) and some blueberries.

The macademia creme is probably my most favourite thing to come out of that cookbook. Reminiscent of custard, I tried it for the first time when I made Strawberry Shortcake Scones for Valentine's Day last year. It goes pretty much anywhere dessert does. It works particularly well when fresh-cut fruit is involved (we definitely dumped strawberries, bananas and blueberries in the leftovers and ate it for dessert twice this past week).

I hope the dinner party was a success and "the family we chose" enjoyed themselves. And we may not be so old - there were an alarming number of empty bottles littering the kitchen on Monday morning!


Bliss Doubt said...

Simple, pretty table. I see a lovely balcony in the background too, or a deck.

Mary said...

Ah, snow-covered deck...just waited for some warmer weather so we can put our gazebo back up and eat outside again! :)

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