Katherine Thompson's Impromptu Tiramisu from Downtown Italian, written with Gabriel Thompson and Joe Campanale, is the perfect sorta cheffy, sorta lazy dessert. Let me say right off, you'll have to make a separate sweet for the kids' table, because this one is strictly 21 and over.
Puddings And Custards
This no-bake dessert flavored with black sesame seeds and honey is a perfect, elegant warm-weather dessert. Its texture is similar to panna cotta, except that it's slightly less jiggly and a little bit more creamy.
At first glance, these bites from the new The Ginger & White Cookbook may look like popovers. Don't be fooled—these miniature "puddings" have a dense, custardy base infused with a toasted caramel flavor. The beauty of the dish is that each serving is composed of ready-made croissants, so all you have to do is whip up a little caramel.
In its original form, rote grütze is a simple pudding made with red fruits, thickened with starch, and served with milk or cream. In this wildly re-imagined version, a red fruit puree is layered on top of a toasted coconut pudding, then topped with an aerated cultured coconut cream. While the number of components may make it seem like a restaurant dessert, each step is easy and the indulgence is worth the effort.
How about a little pick-me-up? Paris Pastry Club presents a pared-down version of tiramisu, the classic dessert that blends cream and coffee with the help of spongy ladyfinger cookies. It's sized to serve one, which makes this an easy indulgence to put together any night of the week.
Inspired by a back-of-box Jell-O pie, this rendition combines fresh-squeezed lemon juice and sweetened whipped cream with some gelatin to hold it all together. The result is an addictively light, zesty pie reminiscent of lemonade.
As Paris Pastry Club author Fanny Zanotti herself remarks, there's not much to say about crème brûlée that hasn't already been said. Its mild, creamy sweetness is a true delight; it's rare to find a person who doesn't like it. The recipe simple, but this preparation remains unique: a single serving of crème brûlée, served in its very own ramekin.
Made with cream and sugar, flavored with lime zest, and thickened with lime juice into a pudding-like consistency, these possets are an easy, elegant chilled dessert. A simple mango-and-mint fruit salad adds refreshing and tropical touch.
Inspired by classic strawberry shortcake, this reinvented version is made with three forms of strawberry (macerated, powdered, pudding), features ginger-and-lemongrass-flavored choux pastry puff, and is topped with light, refreshing buttermilk granita. It's not traditional, but it is an explosion of flavors and textures that's absolutely worth making.
Created as the strawberry component of a reinvented strawberry shortcake recipe, these macerated strawberries and rich strawberry pudding are made with the help of a flavor-packed freeze-dried strawberries. It's delicious as part of the larger strawberry shortcake recipe, but also works well as a standalone fruit-and-pudding dessert.
Brandied cherries add a deep cherry flavor and boozy kick to this rustic French custard.
It's natural to associate crème brûlée with overindulgence. A Lighter Way to Bake uses light cream and lemon to craft a lighter version. It's still sweet and creamy, but not as heavy.
A classic panna cotta is infused with chamomile tea and nestled in a bowl of carefully prepared citrus fruits floating in their own refreshing soup.
No doubt you've had chocolate pots de crème, or a rich chocolate custard before. But has it ever been served with a passion fruit caramel, or a spoonful of candied ginger? How about both, as well as fresh lychees? It's the combination of these diverse elements that makes every bite of this dessert so uniquely delicious.
This recipe for panna cotta takes a bit of advance planning in order to set the layer of hibiscus gelee and pomegranate over the top of the coconut custard, but is well worth the extra time.
Bananas and nuts are an idiot-proof combination, but the addition of malted milk is like having a milkshake in cake form. Which is to say, excellent.
Milk and sugar taste like so much more when you let them simmer slowly. The gorgeous creamy amber of this pudding belies a flavor that's part butterscotch, part caramel, and completely irresistible.
70% cacao chocolate, yolks, and a bit of heavy cream add up to one heck of a deep, dark, sinfully decadent baked chocolate custard.
Even people who don't like pudding like chocolate pudding. You may recall the stovetop classic made with powdered mix, but why go that route with a recipe as simple as this? A hefty portion of chocolate and more than a few cups of milk yield smooth, deep, sweetness that serves a crowd.
A handful of rice and a whole lot of milk make magic in the oven. A whole vanilla pod flavors the pudding, and the entire thing is topped with a cherry syrup spiked with rum. It's comfort in a dish.