Tuesday, June 26, 2012


With any luck I'm lounging on a beach in Key West as you read this.... or at a minimum I'm bellied up to a Tiki Bar avoiding the Tropical Storm that's blowing by.... No matter what I'm doing, I'm on VACATION!  That said, I've got a couple treats lined up for the week from my fellow Food Story Award Judges and CJ is my first {which is appropriate as she was my first Guest Blog!}

So, without further adieu, I'd like to welcome CJ from Food Stories Blog, CJ is an awesome lady with a fun blog that is all about the STORY behind food.... whether it's Picture saying a 1000 words or a Food Holiday.... she's your girl!

Thanks CJ for stopping by.... when you are done here go check her out there!

Hello ... I am C.J. from Food Stories and I am so excited to be joining you today on  National Chocolate Pudding Day . I've only been blogging for a few months and this is only my second guest post so thank you, thank you, thank you for joining me in this foodie adventure. It will certainly be difficult to contain my excitement but I will try :-) Thank you Heidi for extending this opportunity!

Just so you know a little bit about me, I am a 40 something, married female that lives on the west coast of the United States. I love food and all things food related. Being a nurse, I especially like the food science/nutritional aspect of food, as well as, typical food preparation, recipes and eating (of course). Consuming fresh, natural, whole and unprocessed food is probably the way that most people should be eating. Unfortunately, I’m a Type II Diabetic so I have to use some processed items to make my diet even half way palatable. Balancing natural foods along with low carb can be daunting but I work hard at it and do my best. 

When Heidi asked me about doing the guest post, she mentioned that she was going to be out of down during a certain period of time so I immediately went to my handy, dandy list of holidays to see if there would be something exciting to blog about. Instantaneously, my mind was made up when I saw National Chocolate Pudding Day as being an option.  Granted, chocolate pudding may not be that exciting to most people but I love chocolate, pudding, history, food science and nutrition so this was right up my alley. Honestly, I'll try not to bore you :-)

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America tells us that puddings are composed of starch, eggs, milk, and a flavoring of some kind and are cooked in a container. In modern times, pudding would be prepared in a baking dish or mold. In the past, the pudding preparation would have been stuffed into a length of intestines or the stomach of an animal and boiled until done. Some puddings were wrapped in a piece of cloth, tied at the top, and submerged in a large pot of simmering water. As refined white sugar, molasses, chocolate, and vanilla became more available, a preference for sweet puddings evolved. 

Previous to 2010, I had never been a "fan" of pudding; however, after I had bariatric surgery it became very important. After surgery, I was not allowed to eat solid food for several weeks and a lot of things I tried would just not stay down (nausea was a huge side effect of the surgery for me so I struggled). After weeks of not being able to hold anything down, my surgeon suggested that I try sugar free instant pudding made with full fat milk and extra thin so I could slowly sip over long periods of time. It worked for me and my recovery began to speed up. Ever since then, I now love, love, love pudding. Writing this post for Heidi has given me the opportunity to explore pudding more deeply than I have before so I hope you enjoy my trio of chocolate puddings. 

This first sequence of puddings are jello brand sugar free instant pudding made with 1% milk. It's really hard to see but I made three separate chocolate puddings and layered them in the trifle dish. Bottom is dark chocolate, middle is regular chocolate, and the top layer is white chocolate. I photographed these alone and then added some grated chocolate to add some pizzazz.

This second sequence of pudding is a healthy alternative that I like a lot. 
Avocado protein pudding, at your service :-)

This recipe was adapted from FitKnitChick 

1 large, ripe avocado
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 Tbsp unsweetened protein powder (or chocolate protein powder)
1/4 cup Sugar Free Davinci Sweetening Syrup (or honey)
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup unsweetened soy milk (or any type of milk)

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor.
Mix until smooth.
Refrigerate 30 minutes.
Makes 4 servings.

Last, but certainly not least ... Regular chocolate pudding made from scratch. This may not be earth shattering to anyone but myself but I have never made pudding from scratch so this was great fun researching and picking out just the right recipe to try.

This recipe was adapted from Scharffen Berger

4 Tbsp cornstarch
1/3 cup Whey Low Granular (sugar substitute)
1/3 cup Whey Low Diabetic (sugar substitute)
1/8 tsp salt 
1 cup 1% milk
2 cups lite coconut milk (or any type milk)
4 oz of unsweetened chocolate, 70% cocoa or higher, shaved or finely chopped
1 tsp vanilla

Mix cornstarch, sugar and salt in the top of a double boiler.
Slowly stir in milk and chocolate.
Place over boiling water and stir constantly until thick and smooth.
Cover and cook 15 minutes longer, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat & stir in vanilla.
Refrigerate until chilled.

There you have it ... Three very different chocolate puddings to please any palate. I'd like to thank Heidi for having me as a guest blogger and I want to wish all of you a very happy National Chocolate Pudding Day! Hope you'll stop by Food Stories  and see what other food holidays are being celebrated.

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  1. Have fun Heidi on vacation! CJ you have outdone yourself for this wonderful day, this looks so yum!


  2. I didn't realise it was national chocolate pudding day. I would have celebrated more appropriately otherwise!

    1. There's still time to get in on all the madness ... tomorrow is Indian Pudding Day and the next day is Tapioca Pudding Day :-)

  3. Heidi ... Looks like the food images are not displaying so I posted them on my site (http://foodstoriesblog.com/2012/06/26/trio-of-chocolate-pudding-on-chocolate-pudding-day/) until you're able to troubleshoot ... Hope you're enjoying your vacay!

    Thx so much for letting me guest at Young Grasshopper!

    1. Heidi ... Thx for taking care of the images. Hated to bother you on vacay :-(

  4. I wish I was able to see these pics!!! But the recipes sound fabulous!

    1. Jen ... the pics are showing now ... Heidi was able to fix it :-)

  5. Heidi, great use of the classic pudding. It really can be quite a fun creative medium for desserts. (The photos appeared fine on my computer...)

    1. Viviane ... Thx for stopping by ... Heidi was able to fix this on her end and I'm so grateful :-)

  6. i love chocolate pudding! these look delicious, awesome post!

  7. Hey CJ, those are two awesome puddings! I am not a big pudding fan myself, but these look so so good.

    Heidi, glad to meet you :) Enjoy your vacation.

  8. Nice guest post, CJ! Heidi doesn't want any pudding because she's busy drinking herself under the table on vacation. But I'll take one of each and her share, too! :)

  9. Wow, CJ, what amazing-looking puddings! I love the healthy first option, and the layers are beautiful. Heidi, have a great vacation!

  10. Trio of Chocolate Pudding - how can one go wrong! I've always consider chocolate pudding a comforting dessert. Great post ladies!

  11. You're welcome ... Thx for inviting me over :-)

  12. #1-I hope you're havin' oodles of fun! #2-yay, CJ! #3-omg this pudding....just...omg. It looks so velvety!