Pastry Cream...the secret to success

One of the keys to stand-out food is to do the simplest things well. 

Don't skimp on the process, the time or the ingredients and you will be well rewarded. Pastry cream is a great example of this, basically its just a custard except that its made using egg yolks, cream or milk, sugar and vanilla - no custard powder in sight. Quick and easy to make but such a big difference in flavour compared with using custard powder.

Love regular custard?  You will never want to eat it again once you've tried this.

Here is my trusty, never-fail pastry cream recipe. Give it a try and see what you think.
Once you're done, roll out some pastry (your own, homemade of course), to about 3-4mm, blind bake it then finish it off until nice and crispy, spoon in your chilled pastry cream and load the top with whatever fruit is in season...delicious, you don't get much better than that.

300ml whole milk
1 vanilla pod / 1 tsp  good quality essence
80g caster sugar
3 egg yolks
20g plain flour

Heat milk and vanilla until just boiling in a small saucepan. Whisk together sugar and yolks for a couple of minutes until pale, add flour and whisk to combine. Slowly pour hot milk over yolk mixture, whisking well.  Return to the pan and heat until bubbling - whisking all the time, boil for 2 minutes then remove from heat. Pour into a clean bowl and place cling film directly onto the hot pastry cream to prevent a skin forming. The pastry cream will keep for 3 days.

My doughnuts are loaded with this pastry cream, come and try one out at Yoghurt & Co or Bethlehem Market.


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