BitterSweet

An Obsession with All Things Handmade and Home-Cooked

What’s For Pud?

3 Comments

It may appear from the surface that I haven’t been trying any new foods from the lack of reviews, that asumption couldn’t be further from the truth. The problem lies in finding the words [And time] in which to describe them in detail, not to mention eating them at a time of day when the sun still offers its light to aid in the photography. Still, I have one particular product that I tried months ago, with a review that has been in the works for just as long. I didn’t want to give up on it before tasting the last two flavors since I had seen them previously on the grocery store’s shelf… But weeks went by, and it was not to be found anywhere.

The product that I’m talking about is the individually packaged pudding cups made by ZenSoy, a lovely company that makes a point to source only organic raw materials. In addition to pudding, they also purportedly make soymilk, although I have never seen a single one of their cartons in any store I’ve ever been to. Quite a shame too, because a Soy on the Go in cappuccino sounds like a fantastic school lunch accompaniment. Anyway, their puddings come four to the pack, and can be found in most health food stores… Except that as of late, I’ve only been able to get my hands on the chocolate flavor and nothing else.

So… Why of all things would you want to review pudding, you may ask? Trust me, trying to consume pudding itself was a difficult proposition for me to even consider, as it had been years since my childhood days of choking down artificially flavored and over-sweetened gloppy mud claiming the title of “pudding.” Long ago had I written it off as juvenile, only fit for youngsters with undeveloped palates who don’t know what they’re missing by choosing the squat plastic cups over a real treat. However, one can’t base a passionate distaste for a food that has only been consumed as a child, so now facing organic ingredients as a mature vegan, I wanted to give pudding another chance to redeem its tarnished name.

Strolling down the aisles with soy pudding in my basket and an open mind, I tried hard not to think of my preconceived notions of the dessert, and proceeded quickly to check out before I could change my mind. Before I knew it I had arrived home, and there was nothing left to do but dig in.

Banana

First peeling back the aluminum foil lid, a slightly disturbing sight awaited me, but I didn’t let it scare me off so easily; All it needed was a little stirring, and the contents of the plastic cup came together again in a typical pudding-like consistency.

As I was reconstituting my separated pudding by vigorously swirling around my spoon, a powerful banana scent was released and floated upwards, filling my nostrils with the sweet and tempting smell of the overripe fruit. Swallowing my fears along with the spoonful of pale pudding, I stopped cringing and took a moment to think about what I just ingested. It was very sweet and intensely banana flavored, but still in a natural tasting way. It was like a cup of nothing but pure, unadulterated mashed bananas, but the texture was even better – No unpleasant chunks, but also none of that grittiness that you sometimes find in soybean products. I tested to see if the spoon could stand upright in the cup, but it’s not that thick. It did take a good amount of time to drift back down to the side however, if that gives you a better idea of the viscosity.

Chocolate

Dipping in my spoon with slightly less trepidation this time, I discovered that this pudding was extremely viscous – Much thicker than the banana flavor I had just tried. In fact, my spoon was even able to stand upright in the center of the container for a good few seconds before slowly slumping over to the side. Contemplating the texture of the chocolate further, the other variety would have seemed like eating sand paper in comparison. So velvety smooth, it truly reminded me of a chocolate mousse! I’ll bet that if you put it in an ice cream maker or otherwise froze it some how, you would get one hell of a treat…

What really struck me was how ZenSoy really sticks to the natural flavors that they’re trying to portray. Instead of following suit and being super sweet, the chocolate was a very refined dark cocoa sort of flavor, but in no way chalky or one dimensional as some natural products can be. It had such a lovely full, rounded flavor, I can’t quite describe in a way that would do it justice how impressive I found it.

Such a huge difference this product made in my view on the entire potential of the humble dish called pudding, I only wish I could get my hands on it more easily. Why had I abstained so long from pudding, when such a delightful product was right on the supermarket shelf? I can only hope that another random stroke of luck will allow me to encounter those remaining flavors. If you ever happen to find these pudding cups in your local grocery store waiting to find a loving home, don’t hesitate to snatch them up – I promise you won’t regret this purchase.

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Author: Hannah Kaminsky

Author of My Sweet Vegan, Vegan Desserts, Vegan a la Mode, and Easy as Vegan Pie.

3 thoughts on “What’s For Pud?

  1. I ended up trying Tofu Cuties because of your review and I love them! Now I’ll have to try ZenSoy Pudding!

  2. sounds wonderous! I will confess to loving puddings but not buying them as they are “bad for me”…. maybe I could con myself that these are good for me and indulge!

  3. You write the best reviews! I’ll have to find the banana pudding but i’ve had the chocolate one, and i totally agree that it’s like chocolate mousse. Good chocolate mousse but Vegan!

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