This is one of the greatest bang-for-your buck recipes I have ever come across. It rests quietly in the pages of Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything under the unassuming name “Chocolate Tofu Pudding.” I don’t even remember why I first decided to try it- it must have been because he said it was the easiest pudding in the world. But he failed to say anything about how it tastes.
That was silly, because this mousse is amazing. First off, the word “pudding” doesn’t do it justice. It’s more like a flourless chocolate cake or the inside of a truffle. The texture is incredibly silky and dense, melting in your mouth the moment it touches your tongue, turning into a pool of pure chocolate flavor. Tofu’s famous blandness makes it a perfect flavor carrier, interfering in no way at all with the chocolate. Which means you need to use chocolate you really love the flavor of. I like to blend a couple different kinds – a bit of chopped Valrhona bar with some Ghirardelli and/or Guittard chips, for example.
Bittman wasn’t wrong to highlight the ease of this recipe, though. Once you’ve mixed the water and sugar into simple syrup – which you might consider keeping in your fridge in the summer anyway, for sweetening iced tea and other cold drinks – and melted the chocolate (which takes two minutes or less in the microwave), you just chuck everything in the blender, blend until smooth, and chill. It truly is the easiest pudding I’ve ever made, and possibly the best. The fact that it’s vegan is just icing on the cake!
The actual hands-on time of this recipe is about 10 or 15 minutes, maybe 20 if you start with bar chocolate that needs cutting. It does need to chill for an hour before serving, though, so plan ahead!
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips, chunks, or pieces
- 12-oz package silken tofu
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Whipped cream for serving, if desired
Silken tofu may not be the kind you're used to. Unlike the refrigerated tofu sold in water in plastic tubs, silken tofu is found in shelf-stable cardboard cartons. Most large supermarkets carry it in their Asian food sections. Mori-nu is a common brand.