Jan had oral surgery yesterday so she is on a soft food diet for the next few days. She decided to make herself some custard. She decided that she totally disagreed with the one she found in Bittman’s, so she made it from the memory from what her mother taught her fifty years ago. She did make one major change from her mother’s recipe, which was to use my orange infused sugar.
Jan prefers to make individual custard cup, because it is easier to control your portions. You may make one large custard in a large bowl to serve a group. The only important thing is that your custard holder(s) will easily fit into a large baking pan that you half fill with water while baking. You do not want to be searching for the right sized pan while holding a pot of hot custard.
Note: I am new to making custard, although I could not tell you why I did not make it sooner in my long life. Our recent attempts, while tasty, usually resulted in a dense custard with a tough skin on top. This is not the soft and creamy custard that you find in a good Chinese custard tart. While scanning the WordPress “Recipes” tag, I found my answer, although I apparently failed to copy the link. Jan’s mother taught her to cook the custard until the toothpick came out clean. This post suggested that you cook the custard only until the toothpick can stand up on its own, about 10-15 minutes less that we have been cooking ours.
Jan’s Orange Custard
4 whole eggs
¼ cup Karl’s Orange Infused Sugar
¼+ tsp. nutmeg, fresh grated
¾ cup milk
¼ cup half and half
1. Put the eggs in a small bowl and whisk in the sugar and a quarter teaspoon of nutmeg. Reserve this mixture until later.
Tip: Many recipes call for using just the egg yolks in making custards; that is not our practice.
2. Put the milk and cream into a medium sauce pan and heat until just steaming.
3. Remove the pot from the heat and whisk in the egg mixture.
4. Pour the mix into the custard holder(s) and place it (them) into a larger baking pan.
5. Grate a bit of fresh nutmeg over the custard(s).
6. Pour boiling water into the baking pan until it is half way up the sides of the custard holder(s).
Tip: Be careful not to splash the hot water into the custard holder(s).
7. Place the baking pan in a 300° F oven for 1 hour.
Tip: Check the custard at 30 minutes to check for doneness by sticking a toothpick into the center of the custard. If the toothpick stand up on its own, remove the custard from the oven.
Note: This is a change from my original recipe.
8. You may serve the custard warm or cold, but it is best slightly warm.
Tip: If you have made the custard more than an hour ahead of when you plan to serve it, it is a good idea to put it in the refrigerator. Twenty seconds on high in the microwave will warm it enough to serve, without overcooking it.