My cockiness was quickly deflated when I only made it as far as number 2 on the list before I hit a classic that I haven't prepared. In fact, there were a ton I haven't tried my hand at yet. I was amazed at how many recipes in this ever important list have never made their way into my kitchen. Only being able to check 5 of the 15 recipes got me motivated. I would heed the warning of the title and cook all 15 recipes before I die. And since that deadline is an unknown, I plan to cook all 15 in the next couple of weeks. Procrastination isn't really my thing. I will work my way through this list and let you know of any hurdles associated with these classics.
1. Yeast Bread - Check, I have worked with yeast before and although I wouldn't consider myself an expert I feel familiar enough to take credit.
2. Beef Tenderloin Steaks - no grill required, stovetop only - this one will be fun, we love red meat!
3. Cream Pie - three essential recipes in this one - pastry crust, custard filling and meringue.
4. Creme Brulee - will need to purchase the torch before I attempt this one.
5. Fudge - I made white chocolate fudge before, but I think taking credit for that would be cheating. I will make the classic chocolate fudge recipe before I check this one off the list.
6. Cream Puffs - I think this one will be easy. I have made pâte á choux type dough before and I am pretty sure that is where the author thinks this challenge lies.
7. Crown Roast - I will find a special occasion for this one, but am super excited about this recipe.
8. Fried Chicken - This one is something I have always wanted to try, but was too afraid of a sub par result. Growing up a Popeye's fanatic, I know the comparison will be ever present.
9. Roux - Check, I have done this a bunch and it isn't easy, but I am getting better.
10. Pasta and Cream Sauce - Check, I think I have this one down pat.
11. Roasted Turkey and Gravy - Check, I did this two Thanksgivings ago and it was a huge success. I am happy I can claim credit here since roasting a whole turkey for two seems wasteful.
12. Chocolate Pudding - Check, I did this one this weekend and it was fun, delicious and rewarding to check the first new one off the list.
13. Layer Cake - Check, I haven't done it often, but I can definitely claim credit here.
14. Souffle - I have been wanting to make a souffle for quite some time and this is a great reason to finally add it to my weekly menu.
15. Chicken Stock - never attempted it because the boxed stocks are so convenient, but alas it is on the list.
So how many of the recipes above have you made?
Bittersweet Chocolate Pudding
Adapted from Cottage Living January 2005
Yield: Makes 4 servings
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cups whipping cream, divided
- 9 ounces (2 cups) chopped Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate (not chocolate chips)
- 2 teaspoons powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Whisk together first 3 ingredients in a medium bowl
2. Combine milk and 1 cup cream in medium saucepan, and cook over medium heat until hot. Gradually pour hot milk mixture into egg mixture, whisking constantly.
Return mixture to saucepan,
and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a heat-resistant spatula, for 5 minutes or until mixture thickens and coats the spatula or until candy thermometer reads 180°.
3. Remove saucepan from heat. Add chocolate, and let stand 10 seconds;
and all chocolate has melted
and been incorporated.
Transfer chocolate cream to a clean bowl. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the cream, and refrigerate until cold and set, at least 3 hours.
4. Combine remaining 1/2 cup cream, sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Beat at high speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. (Do not overbeat.)
Dollop onto each serving of pudding.