I can’t exactly remember when was the last time I had Sweet Corn Pudding before making these two days back. During my schooling years, this was a popular class party dish. The year-end class party was something to look forward to as it signified the end of the school year and the beginning of the 8-weeks school holidays. School uniforms were mandatory and the only day we were allowed to wear street clothes to school was party day. We would dress up and put on our best clothes for this occasion. The teachers were extra nice and tolerant on that day and food can be eaten in the classroom.
Food, glorious food! There was an abundance of food as each child brought a dish to share. Some favorites were mee siam (spicy fried rice noodles), sardine sandwiches, curry puffs, roti jala (net crepes) with chicken curry, Steamed Glutinous Rice, kuih pie tee (top hats), tahu bakar (stuffed grilled tofu), coconut candy, agar-agar (jellies), and an assortment of kuihs (steamed cakes). Drinks normally consisted of rose syrup or grass jelly mix. We were allowed to pack home the leftovers. It was all good.
You have probably noticed that I did not mention any kind of baked goods as most homes did not have ovens when I was in elementary school. Cakes and cupcakes were seldom, if ever, seen. Hence, we had a lot of steamed cakes and agar-agar which were all cooked on the stove. This corn pudding can be prepared in a few minutes on the stove. We used a British brand of custard powder known as Bird’s custard. If I remember correctly, that was the only brand of custard powder available. A quick check on the internet confirmed that it is indeed Bird’s, as the red, yellow, and blue can is unmistakable. The closest thing we have here in the US is the ever popular Jell-O Cook & Serve pudding and pie filling. I seldom buy this stuff but now it is time to try it out.
Jell-O instant pudding is more readily available and come in a wide range of flavors while the cook & serve is more limited. Most stores only carry the vanilla flavor but I did find a store in my area selling the custard dessert. The instructions on the packaging says to use two cups of milk to one packet of pudding mix bringing it to a full boil on medium heat, stirring constantly. I used one cup of coconut milk with one can of cream style corn which equals roughly three cups of liquid. I added two teaspoons of agar-agar powder to help it coagulate. I was so pleased that it turned out right the very first time. The next day, I used the same recipe but tried the instant mix instead. It was disappointing! While the taste remain more or less the same, it did not coagulate the same way as the cook & serve. I was curious no more! So, there you have it. Please use the COOK & SERVE and not the instant.
I used the agar-agar powder and molds sent by my friend Ann of Anncoo Journal. You should be able to find agar-agar powder at the Asian grocery stores. A friend purchased hers at a healthfood store. If not, please try using Knox unflavored gelatine.
- 1 packet (2.9oz/82g) Jell-O Cook & Serve custard dessert**
- 1 can (14.75oz/418g) cream style corn
- 1 cup (8oz/250ml) coconut milk
- 2 tsp agar-agar powder
Prepare any kind of small molds about 1½in to 2in in diameter
Place coconut milk, pudding mixture and agar-agar powder into a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium heat stirring constantly until custard and agar-agar powders have dissolved, about 2 minutes. Add cream corn and continue stirring for another 4 to 5 minutes until well combined. Remove from heat.
Allow mixture to cool slightly before filling the molds. Place filled mold in the fridge for at least 2 hours before unmolding.
**Not many stores carry the Jell-O Cook & Serve custard dessert. Please use the Cook & Serve vanilla flavor if you can’t find the custard dessert.
Enjoy…..and have a wonderful day!