Old Fashioned Chocolate Pudding Recipe for Christmas

Have you ever had a figgy pudding? It’s the kind of supposedly delectable comestible you hear about in old Christmas songs, but it isn’t all that appetizing in real life. In fact, 3 out of 6 reviews on the top homecooking.com recipe for this dish gave it just one star. The comments read like this “It tasted awful. My family said it was the worst thing they ever tasted. Will never make it again.”

Fortunately, there are other puddings that are much more appetizing. My personal favorite is chocolate cold-bread pudding. I learned this recipe from my grandmother who learned it from my great grandmother. I’ve just tweaked the ingredients a little to use baker’s chocolate instead of cocoa powder.

One of the best things about this recipe is how the ingredients separate a little during cooking. You get a bready crust on top, a thick chocolate pudding in the middle, and a lining of sweet creamy goodness at the very bottom. You can serve this desert warm from the oven. But it’s even better after chilling in the fridge overnight. Vanilla bean ice cream makes a great companion for this rich desert.

You will need:

  • 8 slightly stale biscuits (preferably made from scratch the previous day)
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 4 squares unsweetened baker’s chocolate
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

These ingredient amounts are approximate. You can adjust them up or down based on how many biscuits you have and how sweet you like your pudding.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Melt chocolate in a glass measuring cup or glass bowl in the microwave (1-2 minutes depending on your microwave setting). Add butter and let it melt over the hot chocolate. Cool to just above room temperature.

Crumble biscuits into thick chunks in a large bowl. Pour milk in until biscuit crumbs are covered and just beginning to float. Allow to soak for at least 10 minutes.

Add eggs, sugar, and vanilla to chocolate and stir together. Combine biscuit crumb mixture and chocolate mixture. Stir gently until thoroughly mixed.

Pour into a 13” casserole dish. Place dish on a cookie sheet that has a lip. Place them on the oven rack. Pour water into the cookie sheet (not the casserole dish) to a depth of half an inch.

Cook for 50 minutes. Check texture of pudding. It should be firm at the edges and only very slightly soft in the center (if at all). A toothpick inserted in the center should come out with a pudding-like coating on it. If the mixture is still soupy, cook for at least 10 more minutes.

Cool to room temperature. For a nice, moist crust, cover the pudding with a sopping wet dish towel during the cooling period. Refrigerate once the pudding reaches room temperature.

Serves 12

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