Vanilla Custard

Once you have made ‘real’ custard, or crème anglaise as the French say, you won’t want to go back to that convenient yellow carton. This recipe requires minimal effort and is well worth it. Your homemade custard is delicious on its own or with home-baked or steamed puddings. Also it makes a good base for homemade ice cream or crème caramel.

Makes: about 2 cups  • Prep: 5-10 mins • Cooking time: 10-15 mins

  • 2 cups of full cream milk
  • 1 vanilla pod, juicy and fat , split with the seeds scraped out
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 4 tbsp sugar

Heat the milk along with seeds from the vanilla pod, including the vanilla pod, over a gentle heat. Meanwhile whisk the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is light and frothy. Remove milk from the heat and gradually add to the egg yolk mixture, whisking all the time. Pour back into the pot and heat gently, making sure not to boil the mixture (or it will curdle) and to keep stirring all the time, until thickened. Check to see the mixture coats the back of a spoon. Fish out the vanilla pod and chill until required.

By Diane Heierli • Photography & Styling C&D Heierli