Well talk about opening a can of worms!! A throwaway comment yesterday about home-made custard powder all routes of communication lit up like a proverbial Christmas tree!!
I had no idea that so many people all around the planet hold custard in such high regard – nor that a simple thing like “Birds Custard Powder” is so difficult to obtain (or so expensive) in other places. If you live here you can buy a carton … but if you are elsewhere and craving a taste of Britain this is just for you XX
Good news is that I have a recipe …. I think I got it from a Cheffy mate when I was living in Berlin. I was making some traditional puddings and wanted to custard them …. but couldn’t get custard powder at the time … but this recipe came to the rescue. Whole office of homesick men completely appeased!
Now first things first – this is a lovely recipe …. but it is to make that bright yellow custard that you were served up at school dinners … this is not “Creme Anglais” – not cream and eggs and gently tempered in a water bath stuff. NEON yellow – sweet and yummy kiddy custard ………… beloved of any grown up of a certain vintage.
But it is as yummy as you remember!!
HOMEMADE CUSTARD POWDER
- 125 g icing sugar
- 50 g dried milk powder
- 50 g cornflour
- 2 vanilla beans
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- Half a teaspoon of almond essence
- Quarter teaspoon of yellow food colouring Now you could use vanilla extract here (not essence – essence is just chemicals and the taste is bit funky) but I am using the real thing. It does mean that there are teeny flecks of vanilla seeds in the finished custard but the taste is so much better.
Homemade Custard Powder Directions
So with a very sharp knife cut the bean in half lengthwise. Then with the tip of the knife you can scrape out all of the seeds ……….. and your kitchen gets a blast of vanilla yumminess!!“Carefully place” the icing sugar, powdered milk, cornflour and salt into your blender / food processor.
Resist the urge to let your six year old “help” at this stage ….. it will end in clouds of icing sugar over every surface and a wee red head plonked in the bath to wash the sugar out of his hair!! Still he learned a lesson about “carefully place” didn’t he? In with the vanilla seeds …………………. But don’t throw away the pods – either bury them in a jar of sugar to make vanilla scented sugar or I have cut mine up to put in the custard powder jar to make the mixture “pimped up vanilla” Drip the Almond Extract and the yellow food colouring into the dry ingredients and blitz until everything is well incorporated.
I know – doesn’t look as “yellow” as the Birds powder …. but when you add liquid it does come up more yellow believe me!! “Carefully” LOL – into a jar with the mixture …………….. and you are done ….. custard powder!!!!
So how do you make custard?
Well – here are my ratios.
For each 100ml of custard – a good sized portion on a pudding ….. place 1 tablespoon of powder in the bottom of a microwaveable bowl or jug. Add a little milk and mix until smooth – see the little flecks of vanilla? They look very visible in a tablespoon of milk but not quite so much in a jug full. Add the rest of your milk (100ml for each tablespoon) and microwave for one to one and a half minutes until thickened.
Now – consistency …………………. we like our custard to be quite thin, like a “sauce Anglais” consistency …. like single cream that coats the back of your spoon. For “School Dinner” consistency you need to up the ratio of powder to 1.5 tablespoons of powder to each 100ml of milk.
And to hit the “seasonal note” – if you are planning a trifle over Chrimbo the two tablespoons of powder to each 100ml of milk hits the spot. This custard when cold will “set” and give you the lovely distinct layer over your sponge, jelly and fruit and below your whipped cream ………………… Mmmmmmm! Trifle!!!!
Well ……………. you didn’t think we wouldn’t partake of the “evidence” would you??? Very nice it was too LOL. Spot on with Niklas Norwegian Apple Cake from yesterday!
I know this is not for most of you – cos we can just throw a packet in as we run around the supermarket. But for our friends in foreign climes I hope this will satisfy a craving over the winter months.
Happy puddings my friends!!