Custard is a unique dessert, dating back to the Middle Ages. While traditionally served in a pastry crust, today the word custard is used to describe the filling more than the entire pie. You can serve it with or without a pastry shell. Custard can be cooked on the stove or in the microwave, and then baked until it sets. Follow the steps listed below to make your own custard at home.
Ingredients & supplies required:
- 4 cups of milk
- 6 eggs
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Pie crust (optional)
- Saucepan or oven-proof bowl
- Ovenproof individual dishes or a baking pan in which you can bake the custard
You should not halve or double this particular recipe, or it may not turn out right.
Also consider which toppings you plan to use when serving the custard.
Mix the ingredients: Heat the milk for 2 to 3 minutes in the microwave. You can also use a saucepan on the stovetop to bring the milk just to a boil, but be sure not to over-heat it. While it is warming, whisk the eggs until they are smooth. Then, add the eggs to the warm milk. Now, add the sugar, salt, and vanilla to the mixture, stirring until they have dissolved.
Making the custard smoother. Run the mixture through a strainer, and then stir it again. This is the best way to get the smooth, pudding-like texture of custard. You should not use a blender, as this will change the slightly thick consistency of unbaked custard.
Bake the custard: Pour the custard into small custard dishes, an oven-proof serving dish, or a pie crust. Bake at 325 degrees until a toothpick inserted into the center of the dish comes out clean. It should take about 30 minutes for individual dishes, or 60 minutes for a larger pie shell or casserole dish. Make sure that you don’t bake it too long, though, or the custard can curdle and you’ll have to start over with new ingredients. Under-baked custard, on the other hand, won’t set, and will stay runny.
Serving tips: Let the custard cool before serving. It can be refrigerated to help the cooling process. You can serve your custard alone, sprinkled with cinnamon or nutmeg, or with caramel sauce or fruit. Using a pre-baked pie crust with a custard recipe makes for a very easy pie. Once you’ve got the basic recipe down, try experimenting with different flavoring extracts or toppings.
Custard is a delicious treat that will impress your guests, and is actually quite easy to make. It is very versatile, as it can be served with a variety of toppings, and after many different main courses.