Saturday, 10 November 2007

vanilla custard

After reading all the comments on my last post (the cheating-custard one) saying how easy and quick the custard was to make from scratch and how delicious it was, and a ticking-off from the one and only Tartelette, I shamed myself into making the custard part of the Bostini Cream Pie Daring Baker challenge. Which, indeed, took about fifteen minutes or so to make, was incredibly easy, didn't curdle at all, thickened within a minute and was utterly delicious.

I was of course tempted to add a twist to it - I was thinking cinnamon, cardamom and maybe star anise - but I know that S loves his custard good ole' plain vanilla. And since he had volunteered to make a lovely Sunday roast (and also because I love him and like to make him happy), I decided to stick to vanilla. When the custard had thickened I called S over to the kitchen and said 'look what I made'. His eyes lit up and I didn't have to ask him twice if he wanted to scrape every last bit of the custard out of the pan and lick the whisk.

Luckily I had started early enough in the day so that I could still get a decent daylight picture of my custards - unlike the nuclear looking pics in my last post. I probably should have done something fancy with the custard, saucing it over a decadent chocolate cake or something to that effect, but that would mean I'd have to bake a chocolate cake as well, and by the time that would be ready it would be dark, resulting in more fluorescent looking food. Plus there is something quite comforting about vanilla custard all by itself and so, after the pics, S and I dug straight in.

S of course loved it but I needed a lie-down afterwards, it was so heavy. Couldn't move for half an hour. Even S had to agree that, yummy though it was, it was a bit too creamy to eat by itself - next time I might substitute all that cream with milk. It would have made a perfect sauce for a Bostini Cream Pie though.

adapted from Alpineberry

1/4 cup whole milk
1 tablespoons cornstarch
3egg yolks, beaten
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
1/6 cup sugar

Combine milk and cornstarch in a bowl and blend until smooth. Whisk in and yolks, beating until smooth. Combine cream, vanilla and sugar in a saucepan and carefully bring to a boil. When the mixture just boils, whisk a ladleful into egg mixture to temper it, then whisk this back into the cream mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Pour into cups and refrigerate to chill. Delicious with chocolate sprinkles.

p.s. Baking Soda is only forgiving me for cheating with custard if I send her over some of that Japanese dinner our friends made us. You'll have to make do with a virtual treat, Baking Soda, I hope that's enough. And for good measure, I'll throw in a few pics of our lovely weekend in the country.

sushi rice with salmon flakes, green beans and egg ribbon;
stew with minced meat, potatoes, onions, carrots and okra, with pickles;
French beans with black sesame

countryside - you know, a place outside the M25, with real trees and fresh air


Beatrice said...

This is so funny Inne, I made a similar dish twice last week, and simply cannot get enough. It is what my mum used to make a lot when i was a kid, and how I got addicted to it.

La Tartine Gourmande

Kelly Mahoney said...

Beautiful photos! And those are some tasty looking dishes too.

Baking Soda said...

Not fair!
I could live with your cheating but this makes it worse...the dinner, the real trees, the lovely real bridge and then the custard!
Picture with the different bowls looks like a Flemish master painter, love it!
(remember the meme? I do...if only I could think of a word starting with K...)

Annemarie said...

Well done for clearing your good Daring Bakers name. I did love the custard from that recipe, though I also wanted to flavor it up.

Tartelette said...

Ooops Inne: I did not mean to scold you it was more like a "you little rascal are bad..." in a rebellious/funny way. Hope you did not take it the wrong way.
Love the fall pictures, you satisfy my craving for cooler days.

Inne said...

Bea, it can be so comforting to eat childhood dishes, non? Always brings on a flood of memories for me.

Baking Soda, don't be jealous. I'm sure you can find great Japanese food in Holland. And that real countryside? We hardly ever get to see that since we don't have a car and tend to get stuck in London... Thanks for the Flemish painting comment, that's a really nice thing to say.

Helene, I know, don't worry. I just got so many comments saying how good the custard was I felt morally obliged to make it. Ah, the fall pictures... That's the nice side of it. It also gets dark around 4pm and right now I'm stuck in an office where everybody is sniffing and coughing - that's the other side of fall.