Thursday, May 19, 2011

Bianco Mangiare




This delicate milk pudding sits over a soft spongy cake. Bianco Mangiare pudding has hints of lemon and cinnamon. This easy and lightened version is even better that the original which uses whole milk and a touch of cream. This healthy Italian pudding uses skim milk instead. Literally translated, bianco mangiare means White Food.

This recipe has roots in medieval times, often used when a special occasion called for a dessert. This was definitely on the table in my nonna's house. I make this at times with cookies on the bottom instead of cake. Any plain vanilla or lemon cookie works well. Stella D'oro cookies like roman twist or marguerites are both great for this recipe if you don't have cake on hand.

My mom was over when I was making this recipe. She said she remembers licking the pot after her mom poured the pudding into the casserole. My kids and I got a laugh at that today when we poured out the pudding. The pot was blazing hot! We couldn't imagine how my mom and her siblings could lick a hot pot like that. Then again, my mom tells me the story of how her Nonna would move logs in the fire with her bare hands!

Another Italian story my mom tells is about the people in her town, her paesane'. She says that people would ask their neighbors for a hot coal so they could start a fire in their own home. They'd go to their neighbors house, put some ash from the fireplace in their hand and then the hot coal on top of that and walk home with a hot coal in hand! They must have had some thick hands back then to not feel that kinda heat! My kids and myself included get a kick out of my moms old stories.




  • 4 cups fat free milk
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 lemon peel, just peel the skin off a lemon as you would an apple
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup corn starch, dissolved in 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 of an Entenmanns all butter loaf cake, cut into 1/2 inch slices

In a casserole, mine measured 8x10, arrange sliced cake in the bottom. If you need some more cake, go ahead and add it. In a medium pot on a medium flame add milk, sugar, lemon peel and cinnamon. After about 8 minutes, before the milk begins to bubble or boil add dissolved corn starch and water to milk. Lower the flame to medium low and stir constantly with a wooden spoon for about 4 minutes until the milk becomes creamy and thick. It will have the same consistency of melted (or not yet cooled) pudding. Remove lemon peel and pour pudding into casserole and let stand for 10 minutes then add chips on top. Cool in fridge for 6 hours or overnight. Slice pudding and serve.

Servings: 10


When slicing pudding, use a wet spatula. The water gets between the pudding and the casserole and helps it not stick.

If you wait more than 10 minutes to add the chips, they won't stick


  1. Hi LLR, glad you liked it. I was reading that this recipe has roots back to the medieval times! I love that!!

  2. You're hilarious - I love the stories :)


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