This post was inspired by, and is dedicated to, Norman Friedman. He’s a special guy, who enjoys life in a way that all of us would do well to emulate. A few months ago, Norman’s wonderful daughters, my friends Gail and Joanne, surprised him with a 90th birthday party.
Although I meant to get him a present before the event, somehow it didn’t happen. So as the festivities were ongoing, I asked Norman what he would enjoy. His response was immediate and touching - he wanted me to dedicate a recipe to him.
One of Norman’s favorite foods is My-T Fine chocolate pudding. I decided that I would work on a homemade version that he could easily make for himself. I started down the traditional milk, cornstarch and solid chocolate path, when I realized that you don’t need to cook chocolate pudding if you use a different, healthier thickener – avocado.
I kid you not. Avocado not only works as a component of chocolate pudding, the result tastes great. I don't make chocolate desserts for their health benefits, but in this case the nutritional benefits of avocados are a bonus: fiber, Vitamins C and K, and folate.
With an immersion blender and a microwave, you can make this chocolate pudding in 5 minutes. If you don’t have either one of those gadgets, you can still make it in minutes. Either way, it’s still the easiest chocolate pudding ever, not to mention a rather elegant dessert.
Easy, No-Cooking-Required Chocolate Pudding
2 small or 1 large serving (6 ounces total) Cost - $2.50- $3
- ½ ripe avocado
- 3 – 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
- 4 tablespoons (¼ cup) light brown sugar, lightly packed
- ⅓ cup milk (I used whole milk but you can use low-fat if you prefer)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon high quality semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
- Immersion blender
- Measuring cups for liquids and for solids if you use it for brown sugar
- Measuring spoons
- Small microwave-safe bowl
- Small knife
- Spoon (to pull the avocado out of its skin)
- Small spatula
- Cut the avocado in half and gently twist it so that the pit remains embedded in one half. Spoon out the half without the pit.
- Microwave the chocolate chips. (In my microwave, it took about 1 minute 45 seconds at half power, but the timing and power depend on your microwave.)
- Put all the ingredients in an immersion blender and blend until smooth.
- Put in serving cups. I prefer my chocolate pudding chilled, but if you are desperate for a chocolate fix, you can eat this at room temperature. This pudding is rich, so I used expresso cups; the recipe makes enough for two, and leaves enough in the blender for the cook to have a good time licking the spatula.
Like microwave mini-chocolate cheesecakes, this dessert that can be made for a single chocoholic or a party of them. If you want to make a larger batch, doubling the recipe is about the limit for an immersion blender (at one time), but you could do more in a large size food processor.
Hint – To keep the second half of the avocado from turning brown, leave the pit in it, spread a drop or two of fresh lemon juice on the part of the avocado “meat” that is exposed to air and refrigerate upside down in a small bowl.
Did I mention that Norman is a real ladies man? Here he is, at his party with one of his grandaughters and two friends. I look forward to celebrating many more good times with him - and to providing him samples of what I call "Norman's chocolate pudding." Move over My-T-fine.