By Astrid Tuttle Winegar
In The Silver Chair, poor Jill, Eustace, and Puddleglum end up in the company of giants. The Queen takes a “liking” to Jill, who understandably has lost it and is now indulging in a good cry. “Give her lollipops, give her dolls, give her physics, give her all you can think of—possets and comfits and caraways and lullabies and toys. Don’t cry, little girl, or you won’t be good for anything when the feast comes.”
Yes, Jill, you won’t be good for the… feast… all those tears might render you a bit salty…
A “posset” is traditionally a hot drink consisting of milk that has been sweetened and spiced, then curdled with something mildly alcoholic, such as an ale or some wine. Perhaps you could compare it to a hot egg nog. To be honest, it doesn’t sound all that appetizing to me. I decided to update the concept a bit. You can certainly still consume this as a hot beverage; just pour it in a mug (you might even add some spiced rum or bourbon for a grown-up version). However, I really have a feeling you’ll prefer it as a cold dessert, as shown in the photo.
“Pole’s Pucker-Up Posset”
¼ cup plus ½ cup sweetened coconut
¾ cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cardamom (or cinnamon)
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest
⅓ cup lemon juice
½ cup 1% milk
13½-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
3 extra large eggs
Lightly toast the ¼ cup coconut and set aside. Whisk the sugar through flour together in a 3-quart saucepan. Add the zest through the coconut milk and whisk well. Cook over medium heat, until it starts to bubble and thicken; whisk often. Take off heat. With a hand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs in a large bowl on highest speed until they are pale yellow and thicker. Slowly pour in about ½ cup hot liquid and mix in on medium speed. Then pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan. Heat on a low/medium, whisking often, until it starts to barely bubble. Take off heat and whisk the ½ cup coconut in. Pour into 6 ¾-cup ramekins (or other appropriate dessert dishes). Sprinkle each with the toasted coconut. Place all on a medium baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap, pressing lightly onto each cup. Refrigerate 4-5 hours or even overnight. Cover and chill leftovers. Serves 6.
Astrid Tuttle Winegar is the author of Cooking for Halflings & Monsters: 111 Comfy, Cozy Recipes for Fantasy-Loving Souls, which is currently available exclusively in e-book form on the Amazon Kindle, but will soon be released by Oloris Publishing! Stay tuned for details. For now, she is mostly telling a culinary Middle-earth story here on Legendarium. Astrid has loved C. S. Lewis since childhood, J. R. R. Tolkien since middle and high school, all Star things, both Trek and Wars, all things Whedon, and many other things besides… She lives in the enchanted city of Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her husband and dog. She blogs occasionally at Cooking for Halflings & Monsters. You can check out (and like!) her Facebook page or visit (and follow!) her Twitter feed. Staff Reporter.