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Monday, January 24, 2011

Red: Smooth Vanilla Pudding with Cherry Topping

What is the colour of love? We often associate the colour red with the idea of love, passion, guilt, pain, courage, sacrifice, or blood. The shades of red cover hues of salmon pink, coral red. carmine, scarlet, candy apple, ruby, crimson, fire brick, maroon.  Red fruits are tangy, rich, ripe, juicy, plump, zesty. Jam-packed with vitamins, they are known to fight against inflammation and infection, reduce the levels of cholesterol, thin the blood, and boost immunity, among other benefits.

Red fruits make me happy as they remind me of childhood. I cherish the memory of summers when school was over and the cherry trees were loaded with big, ripe fruits. It was time to go to the market to buy cherries, come back home to stone them (oh, the mess...) and make jam. And who doesn't like cherry preserve? Or fresh cherries to eat them raw, or as a topping for today's posting: smooth vanilla pudding?

Whenever my mother had a surprise for me or cooked something nice, she would call me saying "surpriza cu visine", which for my dear readers means nothing, but it means the world to me.  The "Surprise with cherries" would be the ultimate delight. With or without cherries, the anticipation of discovering something nice would remind me of how much both my parents loved me.

This is what triggered making this simple dessert: sharing the love and the priceless memories today, with my husband. Milk, vanillabrown sugar, saffron, egg yolk and cornflower make up this velvety pudding, while the topping comes in the shape of stoned cherries, white sugar and gelatine.

Because this is why we cook: to show love and make the people we love happy, to chat and to laugh at the table, to sigh and to have a shoulder to cry on when in trouble.

This post is a dedication to the wonderful people that matter the most to me: my husband and my parents. I love you.

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