Vanilla is a flavor derived from orchids of the genus Vanilla, primarily from the Mexican species, flat-leaved vanilla. The word vanilla, derived from the diminutive of the Spanish word vaina (vaina itself meaning sheath or pod), translates simply as “little pod”. Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican people cultivated the vine of the vanilla orchid, called tlilxochitl by the Aztecs. Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés is credited with introducing both vanilla and chocolate to Europe in the 1520s.
Makes 4 servings, 157 calories per serving.
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 3 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 2 cups coconut milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Mix the sugar, cornstarch and salt in a large saucepan.
- Blend in the coconut milk, stirring constantly to avoid lumps.
- Cook the mixture over low heat, stirring constantly until thickened.
- Cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, stirring now and then.
- Remove the pudding from the heat and add the vanilla.
- Let cool for ten minutes, stirring now and then.
- Pour the pudding into a large serving dish or individual serving dishes and chill until firm, about 2 to 3 hours.
- Garnish with fresh fruit.