Tangy crème fraîche and spicy peppercorns add a modern touch to a traditional homemade chocolate pudding.
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 1/2 cups 3.8% homogenized milk
2 ounces (56 g) good-quality 70% bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch coarse salt
2 tbsp crème fraîche
Cracked pink peppercorns
Whisk sugar, cocoa and cornstarch in a medium bowl. Whisk in ½ cup of milk. Pour remaining milk into a small saucepan. Set over medium heat. When almost simmering, slowly whisk in cocoa mixture. Whisk until evenly mixed. Heat, stirring occasionally until thickened (about 3 minutes). Reduce heat if needed. Remove from heat. Sprinkle chocolate over top. Add vanilla and salt. Stir until smooth. Pour into a medium bowl. Press plastic wrap over surface of pudding. Refrigerate until cool and thickened (at least 2 hours).
Just before serving, spoon into bowls. Top with crème fraîche. Sprinkle with a tiny pinch of cracked pink peppercorns, if you like.
The pudding will keep covered and refrigerated for up to 4 days.