Friday, 16 March 2012

Chocolate Pudding (Custard) Frosting

I remember when I was about 7 years old I was invited to the birthday party for one of my schoolmates. Much as liked said schoolmate, I found the party something of an ordeal. It was then that I first discovered that I was destined to be a food snob; that in fact, I already was a food snob.

The first difficulty was that hamburgers had been provided for the adults, but hot dogs had been provided for the children. I hated hated hated hated hated hot dogs. In the interests of being polite (aided and abetted by the fact that there wasn't much else to eat) I managed to choke most of one down, without staring too wistfully at the hamburgers, which I actually would have liked.

Next the parent of my friend offered me some of the birthday cake. I think she actually liked and approved of me, and so offered me the corner piece, plainly intending it as a special treat. Ugh! Horrible! I did manage to lobby for a middle piece, which had much less icing. My friends mother was surprised, but obliging. Yes, even as a kid I thought most frostings were just inedibly too sweet and I wanted less. 

This alternate, custard-based kind of icing has been around for decades, but I only discovered it a few years ago, and have never tried making it before. What can I say? I'm a convert! I love that it's not so disgustingly sweet as most icings.Unfortunately it makes up for that by having extra butter, but hey! Life is tough. Sacrifices must be made. And if this had been around when I was a kid, I would have been thrilled to get that corner piece.

Update: I've changed the name to better describe the techinique; there are no eggs so the base is really a pudding, not a custard. 

12 servings
20 minutes, plus 15 minutes prep time, plus about an hour to cool

Chocolate Custard Frosting

3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup soft unbleached flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
50 grams (2 ounces) unsweetened chocolate
3/4 cup unsalted butter

Sift the sugar, flour, cocoa and salt together. Put them in the top of a double boiler, and slowly mix in the milk, making sure the mixture is smooth and lump-free. Turn on the heat, and cook the mixture, stirring constantly until it thickens. Remove it from the heat and let it cool completely.

When ready to proceed, melt the chocolate in a mixing bowl large enough to hold all the ingredients generously, either over the double boiler again or in the microwave. When it is melted, cool slightly. Add the softened butter and beat them together with an electric mixer. Begin adding the cooled chocolate custard, about one-third at a time, beating well between each addition. The finished icing should be smooth, creamy and light.

1 comment:

carplake said...

Mmmmm, novel idea. I've never thought of making icing out of custard. Wow!