Decadent Vanilla Pudding 
INGREDIENTSNutrition 3⁄4 cup sugar 3 tablespoons cornstarch 3 cups half-and-half or 3 cups milk 4 egg yolks, beaten 1 tablespoon butter 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped) whipped cream (optional, to serve) 6 tablespoons dulce de leche (optional, to serve)
Combine sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan. Stir in half-and-half. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 2 minutes more. Remove from heat. In a thin stream, gradually add 1 cup of hot mixture to beaten egg yolks while whisking vigorously. Scrape hot egg mixture into saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and smooth. Do not boil. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla extract. Pour into a bowl or ramekins or teacups. Cover surface directly with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for about 2 hours. Serve topped with whipped cream and dulce de leche, as desired. NOTE: If using a vanilla bean in place of the extract, just add the split and scraped bean in step 1 when you add the half-and-half. Be sure to remove the bean pod before step 2.