Photo: Gentl & Hyers; Styling: Cindy DiPrima
8 servings

The cranberry steeping liquid clings to the berries and helps the sugar adhere for a sparkling, jewel-like effect. You can use the liquid (which is drained from the cranberries) in cocktails or over ice cream. If you can't find mascarpone cheese, use regular cream cheese.

How to Make It

Step 1

Combine 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup water in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Bring to a simmer; remove from heat. Combine the sugar syrup and cranberries in a small bowl. Cover and chill for 4 hours.

Step 2

Drain cranberries in a colander over a bowl, reserving liquid for another use, if desired. Place sparkling sugar in a shallow dish. Add cranberries, rolling to coat. Spread sugared cranberries in a single layer on a baking sheet; let stand at room temperature 1 hour or until dry.

Step 3

Combine remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a large bowl, stirring well. Combine 1/2 cup milk and egg yolks in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Heat remaining 2 cups milk in a medium heavy saucepan to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Stir egg yolk mixture into cornstarch mixture. Gradually add half of hot milk to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add egg yolk mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and chocolate, stirring until chocolate melts. Spoon pudding into a bowl; place bowl in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until pudding cools, stirring occasionally. Cover surface of pudding with plastic wrap; chill 20 minutes.

Step 4

Combine whipped topping and mascarpone in a bowl, stirring until well blended. Spoon about 1/3 cup pudding into each of 8 bowls or footed glasses; top each serving with about 3 tablespoons mascarpone mixture and about 2 tablespoons cranberries.

Ratings & Reviews

amylovescooking's Review

December 07, 2012
Love the sugared cranberries! I started using turbinado sugar, but remembered I had silver sprinkles which made them look very festive. Pudding came out great. I made my own whipped topping though. My guests loved this dessert! It also worked out great for a gluten-free dessert.

Caseywareagle's Review

December 25, 2010
This was wonderful! The whole family enjoyed it. Definitely will be cataloging this recipe and using it again!

margascav's Review

December 24, 2010
Delicious! I followed the recipe exactly and it came out perfectly. A huge Christmas Eve hit.

kaesha's Review

December 04, 2010
I loved this recipe! Turned out perfectly, my family loved the sugared cranberries. Definitely a winner that I'll make again over the holidays.

ChristaLee's Review

November 24, 2010
Pudding-type recipes can be tricky, but I am usually good in the kitchen and I followed this recipe exactly. After about an hour in the fridge, I pretty much had chocolate milk in a bowl. It didn't set...this could have been my fault or the recipe's, not sure, but like I said these can be tricky. I was making this for Thanksgiving and at this point had nothing to lose, so I put it back in a sauce pan on med heat and kept stirring until it started to boil (same as how you make pudding from a box) it thickened a bit and I put in ramekins and then put in the fridge, so hopefully it will set...smells and tastes good, though!