When I miss my mom, sometimes I crave brownie batter.When I was little, my mom used to make brownies from the box and let my sister and I lick the bowl or the spoon. As we got older, we would make the brownies ourselves, and the whole house smelled like warm, buttery chocolate while they baked in the oven. We would turn on the oven light and stare at them as the batter turned shiny, then crisped on top. The moment we tested them with a toothpick was always agony. Invariably, I got ahead of myself and the toothpick would come out not at all clean, and back in the oven the brownies would go. When they were finally done, we would cut them into small pieces and eat them warm out of the glass pan, usually watching a movie. The whole pan would be gone in less than a day, usually. We would spend the day running to the kitchen to cut off a square, eating it on the way out the door or back to the sofa. The next morning, the brownies would be divvied up for breakfast, because why not?

Not infrequently, brownies were part of our Friday night, pizza and a movie routine (sometimes replaced by cookie dough). The three of us would rent a movie, order or make a pizza, and gorge on cheese and chocolate while we watched the funny, predictable mating dance of girl-meets-boy.

The batter of any baking venture is usually the best part. As opposed to giving one child the bowl and the other the spoon, my mom would hand spoons to everyone and we would clean the bowl together. There’s no point in tossing perfectly good batter down the drain, after all, and no one was concerned about the horrifying effects of raw eggs. I’m still here, after all.

When I saw this recipe for chocolate pudding on The Kitchn, I immediately thought of boxed brownie batter. This recipe tastes remarkably like brownie batter once it’s done, and is a cinch to make. For those with concerns, no raw eggs need cross your lips for you to enjoy the sweet chocolate simplicity. I won’t be able to be with my mom on Mother’s Day this year, but I made chocolate pudding in her honor.

Chocolate Pudding
Serves 8, or serves 2 multiple times
Adapted from The Kitchn, who were inspired by The Minimalist 

You will need:
½ c. granulated sugar
½ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ tsp. salt
3 tbsp. cornstarch
1 c. milk
1 c. heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla

Whisk dry ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat milk and cream in a saucepan over medium heat until it just begins to bubble.

Remove half the cream to the bowl with the dry ingredients and whisk quickly, until the cream and dry mixture are fully incorporated. Add the chocolate mix to the pan with the rest of the cream, lower heat to medium-low, and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens. (This only take a couple of minutes).

Pour into a container, cover with plastic wrap touching the surface of the pudding, and chill in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. And wish your mothers a Happy Mother’s Day.

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