Thursday, 10 July 2014

Baked Egg Custard Recipe

A custard is essentially a blend of eggs and liquid, where the mixture is then either baked, simmered or microwave until the mixture thickens. The classic custard is made with eggs and milk or cream, but any liquid can be used and in the past this was made from a blend of nut milks and eggs.

The ancient Romans were the first to write down the recipe for a custard and they enjoyed egg custards, flavoured with fish sauce as both an accompaniment and a dessert.

Egg custards are so fundamental in cooking (many pies, all quiches and a number of desserts depend on them) that I am giving  a recipe for a basic (but tasty nonetheless) dessert custard here today.

Add a topping of caramelized sugar and you have a brûlée. If you top with fruit purée, then you have a cheat's cheesecake. The bas is just so versatile...

Baked Egg Custard

Serves: 4–6
Baked Egg Custard: A classic yet simple to prepare dessert dish that can also be used as the base for a brûlée, cheat's cheesecake or a trifle. This modern version is almost identical to the Ancient Roman original (excepting the fish sauce!!)


1 egg, lightly beaten
100g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
500ml (2 cups) milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg


Brush a deep 1l (4 cup) ovenproof dish with melted butter or oil.

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, milk and vanilla extract for 2 minutes. Strain this custard mix into the prepared baking dish then sprinkle over the nutmeg.

Place the dish in a shallow roasting tin then pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides.

Transfer to an oven pre-heated to 180°C (350ºF, Gas Mark 4) and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the custard is set and a skewer inserted into the centre emerges cleanly.

When ready, remove the ovenproof dish from the roasting tin and serve immediately.

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