1Note: I used a teflon sauce pan to prepare this recipe.
In a heavy medium nonreactive saucepan, mix the sugar with the arrowroot and salt. Whisk together the milk and eggs then stir into the sugar mixture until incorporated.
2Heat until hot but *not* boiling over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, and cook until thickened, about 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce heat if necessary.
3Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla paste/extract (and the tequila or rum, if using.) Transfer to a bowl.
4Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly on the surface of the pudding to prevent a skin from forming on top. Refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours. Note: this pudding will have a creamy soft consistency and won't set up as firmly as its commercial counterpart (boxed instant pudding).
5Spoon into small dessert bowls and serve cold. Garnish with the sliced almonds and freshly grated nutmeg.