It’s Thanksgiving and Indian Pudding continues its march (humor me) toward dessert hegemony–one sweet to rule them all!
This year, it made the New York Times review of Thanksgiving dishes that “evoke” the 50 states. Though to my mind, the Times mistakenly assigned it to Rhode Island–where my parents live and who wrinkle their noses when it is mentioned–and completely missed the Massachusetts connection via Durgin Park.
Durgin Park has been around for hundreds of years and serves plain Yankee food in an upstairs market hall space. Yes, they have a website–some updating is inevitable–but they know their brand and don’t mess with it.
Same with me and the pudding. Every year I threaten to update it with a little brandy or some candied orange peel, but I never do. It wouldn’t be Indian Pudding and it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving.
This year, I hope you’ll try our version, inspired by the mass quantities steamed up at Durgin Park–brandy on the side?
Indian Pudding at Home
4 cups of whole milk, 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal, 1/4 cup molasses, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1 egg, vanilla ice cream
Scald two cups of the milk in an 8-inch skillet and slowly pour in the cornmeal, stirring to break up the lumps. Simmer over low heat until thickened. Remove from the heat and set aside until it’s warm.
Stir in the molasses, sugar, salt, egg, and one half cup of the remaining milk. Cover the skillet and bake at 325 degrees for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring in a half cup of milk every half hour (more or less milk and more or less time, depending on your oven). The pudding should be thick but not solid.
Serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.