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Japanese Milk Pudding

Enjoy the pudding as is or top it with black sugar sauce, ginger-lemon sauce or macerated blueberries
(Michael Tercha / Chicago Tribune)

Japanese milk pudding is made mainly from milk (as the name implies) but the flavor is reminiscent of ice cream. The dessert itself is easy to make and this version calls for just three ingredients, but if you want the milk pudding to really shine top it with one of the suggested toppings below.  

This recipe is adapted from Maori Murota's "Tokyo Cult Recipes" (Harper Design) and was originally published in The Chicago Tribune

Ingredients

For the milk pudding

  • 1/8 Ounce powdered gelatin
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • 1 1/2 Cup (12 ounces) whole milk
  • 3 Tablespoons raw (demerara) sugar

For the black sugar sauce

  • 1 3/4 Ounce muscovado (dark brown) sugar
  • 3/4 Ounces raw (demerara) sugar
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons water
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 2 thin slices peeled ginger, very finely shredded

For the ginger-lemon sauce

  • 3 1/2 Ounces water
  • 1 3/4 Ounce raw (demerara) sugar
  • 1/2 organic lemon cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 10 very thin slices fresh ginger plus 4 extra slices

For the macerated blueberries

  • 20 blueberries
  • 1 Tablespoon raw (demerara) sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon kirsch (cherry liqueur)
  • A few mint leaves

Directions

For the milk pudding

Step 1: Combine 1/8 ounce gelatin and water in a small bowl, and set aside.

Step 2: Heat the 1 1/2 cups milk and 3 tablespoons sugar on low in a saucepan, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Just before it comes to a boil, remove from the heat, add the gelatin and stir to dissolve completely.

Step 3: Pour the mixture into 4 small glasses. (This quantity is enough for small glasses — if you would like to make larger puddings, double the quantities of ingredients and use larger glasses.)

Step 4: Let the puddings cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for 30 minutes to set.

For the black sugar sauce

Step 1: Place 1 3/4 ounces dark brown sugar, 3/4 ounce demerera sugar and 2 1/2 tablespoons water in a small saucepan on low heat. Once the sugars have completely dissolved, remove from the heat and stir in the 1 tablespoon honey. Let the mixture cool completely. Spoon 1 tablespoon of sauce onto each pudding. Sprinkle with 2 slices shredded ginger.

For the ginger-lemon sauce

Step 1: Put 3 1/2 ounces water, 1 3/4 ounces demerara sugar, lemon slices, and 10 slices ginger in a saucepan. Cook for 5 minutes on low to medium heat until the sauce is thick. Take off the heat, and allow to cool. Spoon 1 tablespoon of sauce onto each pudding, then decorate with a slice of ginger.

For the macerated blueberries

Step 1: Marinate 20 blueberries with 1 tablespoon demerara sugar and 1 tablespoon kirsch for 5 minutes. Arrange some blueberries in each glass with the juice and decorate with the mint leaves.

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