Monday, May 16, 2011

Of waiting. And of Butterscotch Pudding

A couple of years ago, a very dear friend gave me a set of footed dessert dishes that were made in France.  Now, if there's one thing that I am slightly addicted to (other then coffee) it would be pretty dishes. I have managed to collect quite a few over the years, but love to find new treasures.  This particular set is lovely perched in my glass fronted cabinet, catching glimmers of  sunshine. This set is special.  Made in France, from a dear friend. So, in my mind, it should be reserved for special occasions.  It's fancy.  Footed, even.  So, again.  Special. Not for the common, the every day.

And so the dishes stay on the shelf.  Perfect. Waiting for exactly the right time. Waiting till everything is just right.  Waiting.  Waiting.  Waiting.  They are collect bits of dust, start to lose the shine. This business of  not getting to live out their purpose - what they were created to be, is dulling. Instead of being filled, bringing delight and joy - they remain empty.

 Sound familiar?  For me at times, perfection becomes a curse. Just what all do I miss out on because life isn't meeting my standard of perfect? "If only  -fill-in-the-blank- then it would be the right time".  "If I could just__________  then, then it would be right." "If he would finally ________"   Life ticks by.  Beauty stays behind glass because of fear.  Chances missed because of the "what-if".

I pulled the dishes out today.  On a Monday.  For no good reason.  And filled them up with butterscotch pudding. Oh, there was joy alright. I'm glad I stopped waiting.

Butterscotch Pudding

I grew up thinking that pudding came out of a box.  You know, add some milk, whisk  and viola - pudding!  And butterscotch - isn't that a candy flavor?  In truth, butterscotch is simply brown sugar and butter cooked together. From there it becomes the base for a decant ice cream sauce, or frosting, or even brownies.   And also in truth, home made pudding is nothing like the boxed imitation.  Oh no, this is deliciously better. My kids love this still warm and then they love it again when it's chilled.  I often make a double batch, so they can have both.

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 packed brown sugar, dark brown if you have it
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • heaping 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon butter

1.In a heavy saucepan, melt the butter over low heat.  Add the brown sugar and cook, stirring until melted and bubbly.
2. Gradually stir in 1/2 cup of cream.  Stir over low heat until butterscotch is dissolved.  

3.Slowly add in 1 1/2 cups of milk and the heaping 1/4 tsp of salt.  Be careful as this mixture can really foam and bubble.  Whisk  until everything is blended together.  Take off heat and let cool for 5 minutes.

4. In the meantime,  mix together the cornstarch and the water together until smooth and cornstarch is completely dissolved. 

5.  Stir into the milk mixtures.  Cook, stirring constantly over medium high heat until mixture begins to thicken.  Reduce heat to low,  whisking briskly, bring to a simmer and cook for another minute.  Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla and the last tablespoon of butter. 

6.  Pour the pudding into bowls.  If you can stop your family from slurping this up immediately and if pudding skin bothers you, press plastic wrap directly onto surface of the pudding to prevent skin from forming.  Chill for two hours or as long as you can keep your spoon out of it. 


  1. Love the dishes. This reminds me that I have a fancy lemonade pitcher and glasses set that was given to me as a wedding gift. It was passed down through two or three generations, but I've never used it. I guess I'll have to sit and wait for you to post a recipe on how to make lemonade from scratch. :)

  2. No more waiting! Whip out that pitcher and fill it up with Kool-Ade. Or ice water. Or milk. Use it with reckless abandon, and enjoy :)