Butterscotch Puddings with Whipped Cream and Crushed English Toffee
- 3 cups half and half, divided
- 3/4 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla paste*
- 3/4 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
- 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 1.4-ounce chocolate-covered English toffee bar (such as Heath), crushed with mallet or finely chopped
Whisk 1 cup half and half, egg yolks, and cornstarch in medium bowl until smooth. Combine remaining 2 cups half and half, brown sugar, and salt in heavy medium saucepan. Bring just to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Gradually whisk hot half and half mixture into egg yolk mixture. Strain mixture back into same saucepan. Whisk over medium-low heat until mixture just boils and thickens, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat; whisk in butter, Scotch, and vanilla.
Divide pudding mixture among six 3/4-cup ramekins or custard cups. Cover ramekins with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, about 3 hours. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.
Beat whipping cream and powdered sugar in medium bowl until soft peaks form. Spoon large dollops of whipped cream atop pudings. Sprinkle with crushed toffee and serve.
Crushing the toffee bar with a mallet while the bar is still in its wrapper helps keep the crushed pieces contained. Whisking the hot half and half into the egg yolks gradually–instead of all at once–keeps the mixture from curdling. And finally, straining the pudding mixture helps get the smoothest, silkiest result.