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Black Sesame Pudding (Kuro Goma Purin, 黒ごまプリン)

Black Sesame Pudding (Kuro Goma Purin, 黒ごまプリン)

Makes 8 servings

1 packet (.25 ounces) powdered gelatin
1 1/2 tablespoons cold water
1/3 cup toasted black sesame seeds
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup whipping cream

1. Soften the gelatin: Put the cold water in a medium-size bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the top of the water and set aside to soften.

2. Grind the sesame seeds: Place the sesame seeds and 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar in a blender or food processor and grind until well ground.

3. Make the pudding: In a medium-size saucepan, mix the ground sesame seed mixture, milk, and 1/2 cup granulated sugar together. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly to prevent the milk from burning. As soon as the mixture comes to a boil, add the softened gelatin and stir to melt and combine. Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the cream.

4. Cool the pudding: Fill a large bowl halfway with ice, then cover the ice with cold water. Pour the pudding from the saucepan into a slightly smaller bowl, and carefully place the bowl into the ice water bowl, taking care not to spill water into the pudding bowl. Whisk the pudding briefly, then leave it to cool for 5 minutes.

5. While waiting for the milk mixture to cool, set out 8 clean containers to pour the pudding into.

5. After cooling, whip the pudding for about 5 minutes (this whisking will produce a lighter pudding), then equally divide the pudding between the prepared containers. Cover the containers and place in the refrigerator to set up for a minimum of 4 hours, or until firm. Serve cold, garnished with a bit of whipped cream or topping of choice.