Brown Sugar and Chocolate Baked Pudding

The trees are shedding their leaves, the temperature is falling and it’s getting dark early. There’s something about the decrease in day light hours that makes me want to curl up with an old novel, a hot drink, a warm quilt and eat comfort food.

Comfort food: (n) food that provides consolation or a feeling of well-being, typically with a high sugar or other carbohydrate content and associated with childhood or home cooking.

It’s my understanding that comfort foods vary internationally. For example, in the US we tend to crave macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes and chocolate. In Canada, poutine is a favorite. In India, it’s dahl and roti and in Japan, miso soup. Ice cream seems to be the most internationally ubiquitous choice. What’s your favorite comfort food?

chocolate pudding collage

That brings me to the chocolate creation. If you’re like me and you’re comforted by things that are simple, warm, chocolaty and delectable – this dessert is for you.

Brown Sugar and Chocolate Baked Pudding with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Brown Sugar and Chocolate Baked Pudding

150 g. self-rising flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
50 g. good quality cocoa powder
275 g. dark brown sugar, preferably from Wholesome Sweeteners
80 g. butter, melted
120 g. creme fraiche
1 egg, lightly beaten
extra brown sugar and cocoa powder for dusting
500 ml boiling water

Preheat oven to 355 degrees (180 Celsius)

Sift the flour, baking soda, cocoa powder and brown sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Blend in the melted butter, then the creme fraiche, then the egg. Spread batter into one large baking dish or several small ramekins. Sprinkle with extra brown sugar and cocoa powder. Pour boiling water over the top. Bake 30-40 minutes in a large dish and about 10-12 minutes in smaller ramekins. Let cool 5 minutes. Serve with vanilla bean ice cream.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum)

128 g. egg yolks (about 7 large)
200 g. super fine sugar
1 pinch salt
232 g. heavy cream
540 g. milk
2 vanilla beans, split and scraped
2 tsp. vanilla

Beat the yolks and superfine sugar together.

In heavy saucepan, heat the cream milk and scraped vanilla bean until simmering.

Gradually temper the hot liquid into the egg mixture while beating constantly.

Pour entire mixture into a bain-marie and heat to 180 degrees F.

Mixture is done when it leaves a well-defined trace of cream on the back of a wooden spoon.

Chill and then add vanilla. Churn in ice cream machine. Freeze.

baked chocolate pudding 2

I hope you find this recipe as comforting as I do. Bon appetit!


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  1. Everything sounds fabulous except your illness of course. I’m so envious of the weather you describe and long to be in a place that may have some chance of rain, let alone the other things that accompany Fall. What a gorgeous dessert!

  2. i’m right there with you on the comfort food. something about autumn and winter weekends that makes you want to spend the days in the kitchen baking breads and slow cooking sauces, soups, and roasts.

    your dessert postings are always just so darn enticing!! once more, beautiful post.

  3. Oh gosh, so sorry to hear about the flu. Sounds truly awful. I’m hoping you’re feeling better soon!

    This dessert and your photos of it are amazing!! This one is definitely going on my to-do list. It’ll be perfect for the long cold days that are coming our way 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

  4. I just found this blog & I think I’ve died and gone to heaven. Such incredible pictures! Sorry to read that you’re under the weather. Chocolate always makes things better.

  5. Rice is my comfort food. And Ice cream too! I was down with a bad cold too! I’m still recoveing and no ice cream for me for a few more days!

    The pudding looks gorgeous! Love your photos and styling. I neednt say it every time but I just can’t help it. Cheers!

  6. My goodness, I hope you feel better soon. You’ve benefited us by staying home and making spectacular chocolate desserts! I’ve got to hand it to you, you’re an amazing photographer despite on feeling well!!!

  7. OMG…one of the Chef’s I used to work with made something very similar to this. It was my favorite. He topped it with an espresso whipped cream but I like yours even better. I will have to save this for a non-raw day! Beautiful work, as usual!

  8. I love the idea of melted ice cream and hot chocolate pudding!!! If I’m not being too nosy, do you have any suggestions for warding off the flu this year? I’m terrified of me and my kids getting it!

  9. Thanks for the well wishes and comments everyone. It means more than you know.

    Julia, I don’t know what you can do to prevent it. I have no risk factors, exercise and eat incredibly nutritious meals. It’s really nasty bug this year. If you have any specific questions about it, feel free to email me.

  10. The best thing about autumn is definetely staying in, baking or cooking! And my favourite comfort food happens to be something like this – molten chocolate cake! I want some of that now! Though applecake is another classic.

    Your photos are beautiful!

  11. I agree with jenmenke. This is one of the most stunning blogs I have ever seen. Bring on the comfort! (get well soon too!)

  12. Really sorry to read about the flu – I hope you feel better soon! A sense of humor definitely helps and puddings like this sure go a long way 🙂 My comfort food when I’m ill is chicken soup, especially when it’s cold out.

  13. Exquisite shots. My favorite comfort food is mac and cheese. Not the packaged kind, the real thing with cheddar. Sorry your under the weather. How long before you recover?

  14. I hope you feel better.

    What a great pudding!

    When you said in Canada poutine is a comfort food, it actually depends where you are from (or where you live). Actually, poutine is from Quebec (and yes, recognized as comfort food), but it is not so well know in English Canada. I don’t even know their comfort food even though I live in English Canada now (but I am from Quebec)

  15. Karine – Thanks for the well-wishes. I guess I’m more familiar with poutine since New England is close to Quebec. It will be interesting to see if anyone adds any input from the English-speaking side!

  16. I hope you’re feeling better El! This pudding and the previous lavender + chocolate cupcakes are stunningly beautiful and must smell divine. I just planted lavender a couple of months ago. I’m not sure how it will do inside, but I figured I’d try.

    Bread pudding and my mom’s macaroni + cheese are two big comfort foods for me. : )

  17. So luscious and beautiful — thank you for sharing this sweet treat with us and I’m so sorry to hear you were so sick! Hope you are resting up and thanks so much for leaving a comment on my blog!

  18. El,
    Thank you so much for visiting FLB recently and writing such kind commentary on the photos! It means a lot especially coming from someone who has such an amazingly beautiful and thoughtful site!

  19. Oh no!
    I hope you’re feeling better now. The pudding looks so comforting …… a bowl of magic potion-like food to drive away any illness!
    My comfort food is freshly baked bread – good bread that is full of flavor. 🙂

  20. This looks so wonderful my son and I have decided to make it tonight. I am really enjoying your blog. The pictures are beautiful and your posts interesting! I will be adding you to my favorite sites. Well done! Pam

  21. Oh no, El I’m so sorry you are not feeling well. I do hope this gorgeous dessert comforts you while you are feeling so low! I hope you recover soon!

    Thinking of you, Zoë

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