2000s Recipes + Menus

Vanilla Custard

Makesabout 4 cups
  • Active time:20 min
  • Start to finish:2 1/4 hr (includes chilling)
December 2008
  • 3 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Equipment:

    an instant-read thermometer
  • Heat milk in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat until hot but not boiling.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Add hot milk to egg mixture in a slow stream, whisking constantly, then pour custard back into saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and registers 170°F (do not let boil). Immediately strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl and stir in butter and vanilla. Chill custard, its surface covered with parchment paper (to prevent a skin from forming), until cold, 2 to 3 hours.
Cooks’ notes:
  • Custard can be quick-chilled in an ice bath, stirring frequently.
  • Custard can be chilled (in refrigerator) up to 1 day.
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