Maura McEvoy
Chocolate Pudding, adapted from The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook by Michael Anthony.
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Chocolate Pudding

The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook, Michael Anthony - December 20th, 2013

This recipe has been adapted from The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook by Michael Anthony with a history by Danny Meyer―a book featured in Words-to-Table Cooking, Food Arts' yearly roundup of chef-authored cookbooks.

“Desserts at Gramercy evoke nostalgia and deliver a complex experience. You can make this creamy chocolate pudding more intriguing by serving it with the slightly bitter salted caramel sauce, deeply caramelized croutons, and a pinch of sea salt.

“If you sit on the bench in the waiting area of the restaurant in the late afternoon, you can smell the aroma of the brioche wafting up from the downstairs kitchen. I’m certainly not going to suggest you make brioche from scratch just for these croutons, but you will appreciate the difference if you do. Use challah as a substitute or brioche from a good bakery. Caramelizing the croutons takes time, so be patient and stir them until they color properly.”

Serves 6 to 8

Pudding:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 Tbsps. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 4 lg. egg yolks
  • 6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 tsps. vanilla extract
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk 1/4 cup sugar, cornstarch, cocoa, and salt; whisk in 1/2 cup milk; whisk in yolks; reserve.

  2. In medium saucepan, bring remaining milk and sugar to boil over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves; remove from heat; temper into cocoa mixture and pour mixture back into saucepan; bring to boil, whisking constantly 1 minute; remove from heat; strain through chinois into large bowl; whisk in chocolate, butter, and vanilla until smooth; transfer to airtight container; cover; reserve in refrigerator until cold.

Salted caramel sauce: Makes 2 1/2 cups

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 Tbsps. unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

In small saucepan, bring cream to a boil over medium heat; in medium saucepan, bring sugar and 1/4 cup water to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves; boil, without stirring, until syrup becomes an amber color (about 340°F), about 8 minutes; remove immediately from heat; very slowly and carefully pour hot cream down the side of the saucepan into the caramel; stir to combine; stir in butter and salt; reserve.

Brioche croutons:

  • 2 Tbsps. unsalted butter
  • 1/4 pound (2 cups) brioche, crusts removed, cut into 1” cubes
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

In large skillet, melt butter over medium-low heat; add bread; stir to coat; sprinkle with sugar; stir gently and constantly until sugar melts and croutons caramelize on all sides; transfer to baking sheet; cool completely; reserve.

Assembly:

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream, lightly whipped
  • sea salt

To serve, divide pudding among plates; top with caramel, whipped cream, brioche croutons, and pinch of sea salt.

Reprinted from The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook. Copyright © 2013 by Gramercy Tavern Corp. Photographs © 2013 by Maura McEvoy. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, a division of Random House, LLC.