I like the stuff.
Big lumpy vanilla tasting pudding. The Pudding with "Eyes". The problem is that just like anything else the stuff you buy in the store is never as good as how you make it at home. I have to say though that with home made chicken dinners sold in the supermarkets, finding someone who makes Tapioca Pudding from scratch is a rare thing. Its not the 1960s any more I guess. I'll be the weird guy who bakes bread, makes Pecan and Peanut Brittle, and Tapioca pudding on the block.
The recipe is pretty simple. Get the Tapioca Pearls and soak 1/2 cup of them overnight. Lost you already didn't I?
Ok, now it's "Tomorrow", time to make the pudding. Drain the Pearls, and put them in a sauce pan. Add to the pan 3 cups Milk, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 cup of sugar, and 2 eggs. Turn the heat on Medium and constantly stir.
Constantly. Don't stop, but you don't have to be vigorous. Just enough to break the eggs and mix all things evenly.
As the mixture cooks, on a medium heat, it will start to warm and slowly thicken. It should take about 15 minutes but the last time I made the stuff it took 45. There was some leftover water in the pan, and that slowed the thickening down.
When it is visibly thick, and beginning to look like it is going to tighten up, remove it from the heat and add 1 tsp of Vanilla. I've also made it with Mango Extract and it was great.
The trick is to pull it from the heat at just the right time. It will be a judgement call. If you go too long, it will end up like Jello and that isn't necessarily bad. Not long enough and it will not thicken into a pudding and remain soupy. If you cook it more than once, you'll get a feel for how it is done. Serve in 3/4 to 1 cup servings. Serves 4 to 6.
Or just drive down to Publix and get a container of the stuff.