Saturday, October 10, 2009
"Frog Spawn" Thai Tapioca Pudding
Bet you have no clue how insanely delicious frog spawn is, am I right? Take it from me, you'll want to slave over a hot stove for this one. I just happened upon this old photo from one of our parties in 2007 and it's popped me out of my non-blogging stupor just long enough to want to post this deliciously foul recipe. How could I not share, what with Halloween right around the corner? I'm not sure this is the serving suggestion Bon Appetit had envisioned when they published this in '06. But we've always called their "Thai Tapioca Pudding" Frog Spawn anyway...why not dress each cup accordingly.
"Frog Spawn" Thai Tapioca Pudding:
(Bon Appetit Jan '06)
1 2x1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, sliced
1 1x1-inch piece fresh galangal,* peeled, sliced
10 Thai basil leaves*
6 fresh cilantro sprigs
2 kaffir lime leaves* or 2 teaspoons grated lime peel
1 tablespoon sliced lemongrass*
2 cups water
2 cups whole milk (you could probably sub unsweetened soymilk)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup small pearl tapioca* (not quick-cooking. I usually use Reese brand)
1 13.5- to 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk*
mini plastic frogs optional, but thoroughly recommended! :-)
another option would be to tint the "spawn" to a pale yellowish-green with food coloring...it's not been colored in my photo.
Combine first 6 ingredients in food processor; blend 20 seconds. Transfer to medium saucepan; add 2 cups water and bring to boil. Remove pan from heat and let steep uncovered 20 minutes. Pour mixture into strainer set over heavy large saucepan; press on solids to release flavored liquid. Discard solids in strainer.
Add milk and sugar to flavored liquid in pan; bring to boil. Stir in tapioca; return to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer uncovered until pudding thickens and is reduced to 2 1/4 cups, stirring frequently (you really should just pull up a chair and stir the whole durn time or it'll scald), about 35 minutes. Stir in coconut milk (pudding will be runny). Transfer to bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Tint with food coloring if desired and garnish each serving with a mini frog.
*Galangal, Thai basil, kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, small pearl tapioca, and unsweetened coconut milk are available at Asian markets, or if you're in Austin or close to a Central Market they now seem to carry the kaffir lime and galangal as well as lemongrass, etc.