You can’t really go wrong with this dessert. Whether it is Valentine’s Day, a birthday get together, or a random Tuesday, this is definitely a crowd pleaser. Dark chocolate + Nutella = can it get any better? Maybe if there was a bacon garnish, but I didn’t have any in the house, so a chocolate dipped strawberry will have to do.
Even though today is Valentine’s Day, I have to admit that my husband and I ate (and by ate, I mean scarfed down) this budino yesterday; partly because I am working all day today, but probably the real reason is that neither of us have the willpower to see such an intensely chocolate and rich dessert in the fridge and not dig in. I wish I could resist, especially because I spent all day at work making (and eating) olive oil cakes, candy hearts, strawberry coulis, sea salt shortbread cookies, and 50 more of these Nutella budinos. For this one week in February it’s sort of a mad dash at work to see how much sugar we can possibly pump out of the kitchen and sell to our guests. I have been on a sugar high since Monday and I will be happy when my blood sugar level starts to taper as well as the craziness at the restaurant.
This particular dessert is part of a duo dessert plate we are doing at the restaurant as part of special Valentine’s Day dinner. The original menu was to include a chocolate pot de creme with a sea salt shortbread cookie garnish. I decided to fancy up the pot de creme though by adding Nutella and changing the ingredients just a little bit to make a budino. A budino is really similar to a pot de creme, the biggest difference is that a budino is an Italian custard and typically includes milk and cream, whereas a traditional French pot de creme is mostly cream. I thought lightning the custard up by using a combo of milk and cream would help balance the addition of the rich Nutella.
After the budino baked and then cooled, and I had my first taste, I was actually surprised by how thick and intensely rich it turned out to be. I thought by using half milk and half cream it might be more like pudding then I wanted, but the texture and flavor were perfect. This dessert is perfect in small quantities because of its richness. Even though I could polish off one of these whole ramekins all on my own, I enjoyed sitting on the couch with my husband and sharing one with two spoons. Happy V Day!
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2½ oz semisweet chocolate
- ¼ cup Nutella
- 2 egg yolks
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ¼ tsp salt
- 4 – 4 oz ramekins or 2 – 8 oz ramekins
- Preheat the oven to 325F degrees. Combine the milk and the cream in a small saucepan and heat on the stove over medium heat until tiny bubbles just start to form around the edge. Alternatively, you can heat in the microwave, just be careful to not let the milk scald.
- Place the chocolate into a medium sized bowl. If you are using block chocolate make sure it is chopped into smaller pieces. You could also use semisweet chocolate chips. Pour the hot milk/cream over the chocolate and whisk until the chocolate is melted and is smooth. Add the nutella and continue to whisk until melted and smooth. Next, whisk in the egg yolks, sugar, salt and vanilla. The custard should be fairly dark in color and silky.
- Carefully pour the custard into the ramekins, dividing it equally. Place the filled ramekins into a baking dish, and then pour hot water into the baking dish until it comes half way up the ramekins. Be careful not to drip any water into the custard.
- Bake in the oven 30-35 minutes rotating half way thru. The custard should just jiggle slightly in the center. Allow the ramekins to cool in the water bath until they are cool enough to touch. Then finish cooling them in the fridge for at least 2 hours. Serve with whipped cream and chocolate strawberries or cookies.