Monday, January 26, 2009

I'm dedicating this blog to the food I loved most. But it went away.

A year ago, the folks at Nesquik decided to change their formula. "Looking for less sugar?" it said on the new label. No, actually I wasn't. I liked the classic formula just fine. But nobody asked me, did they? And nobody responded to my indignant e-mail. And nobody noticed that I was Nesquik's most faithful customer. I mixed so much Nesquik into my milk that I'm sure I kept the company afloat for years.

To their credit, they got a pretty sweet, un-fakey taste to their new formula. But it's missing the lumps. When I whipped up the old granular stuff, a few lumps always rose to the top and they were the best part of the whole treat.

I managed to buy up a dozen Sam's Club-sized cans at a discount store before the stuff completely disappeared. This supply lasted me fifteen months. Then, just as we were about to move out of an apartment and into a new house, I had one, um, dose left.

I saved it, to eat in the new house.

Then it was bye-bye Nesquik.

But I still like my afternoon shot of chocolate.

So I have found a pretty darn good substitute, which I might even like better--Chocolate Marshmallow Pudding:

2 1/2 TB margarine
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
7 1/2 TB baking cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
2 1/2 cups milk
1 egg, well beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 cups mini marshmallows

Melt margarine in microwave. Blend flour, sugar, cocoa and salt in a big microwave-safe bowl. Gradually whisk in milk and margarine until smooth. Microwave, uncovered, on high for 3 minutes. Microwave 5 minutes longer or until thickened, stirring after each minute. With an electric beater, beat 1/4 cup chocolate mixture into the egg, then return all to the main mixture, beating well. Microwave 2 minutes longer, stirring after first minute. Stir in vanilla. Fold marshmallows lightly into hot mixture. Let stand 5 minutes. Gently fold mixture over 2 or 3 times, then turn into serving dishes. Serves 4 and, for those of you who care, each serving is 300 calories.

I got this recipe from a really old cookbook (think pincurls and seamed hose) and adapted it to the microwave so it would be quick and I wouldn't have to labor so hard for my daily afternoon chocolate bliss. It's pretty hard for me to share my stash with anybody, since it now takes about 25 minutes to stir up an afternoon treat that used to take 10 seconds. That's why I just taught you how to make it so you won't need to beg any from me.