30.3.07

dessert for breakfast

i'm pretty well-known, at least amongst my friends, for my whimsical take on things. this can best be summed up by what i like to think of as my motto:

life is uncertain.
eat dessert first.

today, though, i am pretty sure i brought it to an entirely new level of decadence.
i ate dessert for breakfast.

it really started last night. the workday, as they are wont to do, was dragging on forever, and i was restless. the weather here in our nation's captiol was just barely warm enough to justify the three-mile walk home (plus a detour to whole foods). as i started my walk, i had all of these virtuous plans to make a quick, wholesome dinner--a miso soup, with some soba noodles and chargrilled chicken, and maybe a handful of mushrooms and a few bird chiles for spice. the farther i walked, however, the less enamored of this idea i became, and even though i picked up a chicken breast at the store i found myself unable to summon the will to cook it by the time i arrived home. the chicken went back into the fridge, to be replaced on the counter by milk, cream and a pile of chocolate croissants.

have i mentioned that i am completely smitten with nigella lawson? because i am. i love the way she writes, and i love the way she cooks, and most of all, i love her attitude toward eating, which is that eating is a pleasure. so last night, in desperate need of comfort after a useless day at the office (plus day 5 of my spring sanity restoration project, plus packing to head north yet again for the weekend), i took a page out of her book and whipped up a pain-au-chocolat pudding. i have to admit, i seriously considered eating this for dinner all by itself but i managed to exercise some restraint at the last minute and reheat some leftover polenta and chicken.

oh. my. goodness. my first bite of the cream-soaked baked croissant practically made the ickiness of my day banish all on its own (although it helped that i had put my SSRP on hold for the evening and cuddled up in bed), even if i had poured too much of the cream mixture into the pan.

after sleeping the sleep of the chocolately sated for an incredible 8 hours, and finding myself completely unable to get out of bed until 45 minutes after my alarm went off (making me, yet again, late for work) i decided that the croissant pudding deserved an encore performance. what better way to feel good about your day than to start it off with a bit of chocolate, i say.

pain-au-chocolat pudding
(adapted from nigella lawson, how to be a domestic goddess)

6 mini chocolate croissants, sliced into chunks
1 cup skim milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 eggs
1 very large schlug of vanilla (nigella suggests 1/2 teaspoon)
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

preheat the oven to 350.
place the croissant chunks in a heatproof bowl (i used a disposable loaf pan). meanwhile, simmer the milk and cream together in a pan on the stove. whisk the two eggs, adding the sugar. slowly pour the simmering milk mixture into the egg and sugar mixture, whisking constantly so the eggs don't scramble. add the vanilla, and pour the liquid over the croissant chunks. give it a few minutes to absorb the liquid before placing the pan in the oven.

oven times might vary--i halved nigella's orginal recipe, so i started checking the pan after about 20 minutes. i decided it was finished after about half an hour.

enjoy with a cup of chocolate milk or hot chocolate.

4 comments:

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Dessert for breakfast...schlug...I do think I'm going to enjoy you! Glad you've become a Daring Baker! Enjoy the weekend!

Brilynn said...

I'm definitely guilty of dessert for breakfast...

Elle said...

Some of the best desserts are eaten for breakfast and this looks very, very good. Glad you are part of the Daring Bakers. You've got the daring part down and are obviously a wonderful baker, too.

Freya and Paul said...

There is nothing wrong with dessert for breakfast and in fact I welcome it!
Welcome to the DBs!