• 1/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ancho chile powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups half and half
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 4 ounces 60 percent bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • Whipped cream, for garnish
  • Cayenne pepper, for garnish


  1. Add cocoa, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, chile powder, cayenne, and salt to a large glass bowl.
  2. Whisk together to blend ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk in the half and half, egg yolks, and vanilla until smooth.
  4. Place saucepan over medium heat, add mixture, and whisk as it heats.
  5. It will slowly begin to thicken. Once thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (about 5 minutes), stir in the chocolate and butter to melt.
  6. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into the individual serving bowls.
  7. Cover with plastic wrap- pressing the wrap onto the surface of the pudding to prevent a skin from forming.
  8. Refrigerate for 3 hours so it can further thicken as well as chill.
  9. Remove plastic wrap and use the back of a spoon to smooth out the surface of each pudding.
  10. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and sprinkle with a pinch of cayenne pepper.