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I love to add some port or dark spiced rum (Zacapa or Zaya), to the pudding and/or the topping! Serve with a tawny port such as my favourite Taylor Fladgate 20-year or a higher-end sipping rum such as Zacapa or Zaya. The pudding can be made up to a few days in advance, but wait to mix the topping until you're ready to serve.
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- 1⁄4 cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1⁄4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 pinch ground cloves
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 1⁄2 cups whole milk
- 1 1⁄2 cups half-and-half
- one 15-ounce can unsweetened pumpkin puree (1 3/4 cups)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1⁄4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons minced crystallized ginger
- 1 cup coarsely crumbled store-bought gingersnap cookie (about 4 ounces)
- PUDDING: In a medium bowl, combine the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat at medium speed until the egg yolk mixture is thickened and light yellow, about 4 minutes.
- In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and half-and-half until small bubbles appear around the rim. Gradually beat 1 cup of the hot milk mixture into the egg yolk mixture, then add the egg yolk mixture to the saucepan. Cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly with a heatproof rubber spatula, until the pudding is gently boiling and as thick as mayonnaise, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- In a small skillet, cook the pumpkin puree over high heat, stirring constantly, until slightly dry, about 3 minutes. Add the puree to the pudding along with the butter and vanilla and stir until the butter melts. Transfer the pudding to a large bowl and press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface. Refrigerate until very cold, about 4 hours.
- TOPPING: In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the heavy cream with the confectioners' sugar and minced crystallized ginger at high speed until firm peaks form.
- Spoon the pudding into wine glasses or dessert bowls and dollop the ginger whipped cream on top. Sprinkle with the crumbled gingersnaps and serve.