In the Oven: Chocolate Espresso Tapioca Pudding with Kahlúa Whipped Cream
Yield: 8 servings
For the Espresso Tapioca
  • 1⁄3 cup (60 g) small pearl tapioca (not instant), such as Bob’s Red Mill
  • 1 cup (240 ml) heavy cream 2 large eggs, separated
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1⁄2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 cups (480 ml) whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened dark cocoa powder, such as Valrhona
  • 2 ounces (55 g) high-quality dark chocolate, chopped 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Kahlúa Whipped Cream
  • 1 1⁄4 cups (300 ml) heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons super fine sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Kahlúa
Make the Espresso Tapioca
  1. Place the tapioca in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cover it with 3⁄4 cup (180 ml) of the cream and let it soak for 30 minutes.
  2. About 25 minutes into the soak, place the egg whites and salt in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or, if you are feeling strong, a whisk, a bowl, and a ready arm), and whisk on high speed for 1 to 2 minutes, until right before soft peaks form. Sprinkle the top of the mixture with the sugar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Set aside.
  3. Add the remaining 1⁄4 cup (60 ml) cream, the milk, and the egg yolks to the tapioca mixture. Whisk gently until just combined. Place the pan over medium heat and, stirring constantly (be very careful —tapioca scorches easily), bring the mixture to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat to low and simmer, continuing to stir constantly, until the tapioca is swollen and translucent, and the entire mixture thickens, 10 to 15 more minutes. Remove it from the heat. Add the espresso powder, cocoa, and chocolate and stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is combined.
  4. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold one-fourth of the tapioca mixture into the egg whites until almost combined, then transfer the mixture back to the medium saucepan containing the rest of the tapioca. Place the pan over medium-low heat and cook for a few more minutes, until the mixture is completely combined. Allow it to cool briefly, then stir in the vanilla. Transfer the mixture to 8 individual ramekins or coffee mugs. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, until the mixture is no longer jiggly.
Make the Kahlúa Whipped Cream
  1. Pour the cream into a chilled metal bowl and beat vigorously with a chilled whisk for about 1 minute, until soft peaks form. Sprinkle the sugar and Kahlúa to taste over the cream and continue whisking vigorously until stiff peaks form. Spoon dollops on top of the chilled puddings and serve immediately.
How to store: Individual puddings (without whipped cream) will keep in the refrigerator, covered in plastic wrap, for up to 3 days.
Recipe by Baked Sunday Mornings at