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I have an announcement to make. I don’t understand custard powder. It’s hard to use, it clumps, it’s time consuming. What’s more, it’s insidious. By existing, it implies that it is the easy, instant version of custard. “You think I’m difficult”, it whispers, as you beat frantically against the ever forming lumps, “at least you aren’t making the real thing. This is convenience. Feel inadequate yet?”

Well, the cat is out of the bag. Making custard from scratch takes about the same time as packet custard and I find it easier to get to a smooth texture. It is a beautiful golden colour, far removed from the banana-fruit-burst-synthetic-lolly shade of custard powder custard. But the best part for me is the flavour. It is far nicer, rich, decedent, and fragrant with vanilla. The prefect thing to create an easy yet special dessert.

Pair with any warm winter dessert, any fruit pie, fresh fruit, or serve just as it is. Tonight I paired it with honey baked apples, as shown. I’ll post the recipe for those later.

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Custard

Two egg yolks

One cup whole milk

Three tablespoons of brown sugar

One tablespoon of corn flour

Half a teaspoon of vanilla essence

Heat the egg yolks, brown sugar, vanilla essence and almost all the milk (hold back about two tablespoons) in a small saucepan. Mix the reserved milk with the corn flour and stir into a paste, as you would with conventional custard powder. Add this to the pan. Heat and stir constantly, until the mixture thickens to your desired consistency.

Serves four as an accompaniment to a dessert, or two on its own.

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