Pastry Cream / Crème Patisserie / Custard Cream

Pastry cream, aka. crème patisserie or custard cream, is bff to many desserts. Raymond Blanc, a highly respected French chef in Britain, once said "Pastry cream or crème patissière is to chefs what concrete is to builders."

With its satisfactory taste, sweet and creamy with pleasurable vanilla scent, the use of pastry cream is versatile. There are a numbers of desserts that are accompanied with pastry cream -- such as trifles, fruit tarts, Napoleons, cream pies, fruit crumbles, cream puffs (eclairs), or even cakes like Boston cream pie, etc.

If you are virgin to pastry cream, please note the followings:

~ The stage you need to be careful the most is what it's called 'tempering'. When mixing two ingredients of very different temperatures, especially when one of them is sensitive to sudden temperature change, it can cause a problem (in this case, putting boiling milk into eggs causes egg lumps). So we will gradually reduce the temperature gap, hence called 'tempering'.
In this case, we will gradually add the hot milk into the egg mixture. It should starts out with a very small amount of milk to rise the temperature of the egg mixture little by little. With the help from continuous stirring, this prevents the egg to be 'cooked' and cause egg lumps, which is no good to the taste of pastry cream at all. Yak!

~ Don't worry if your freshly made pastry cream doesn't seem like curd to your eyes. It will curdle later especially if chilled.

~ If you aren't going to use it right away, be sure to wrap it with cling film upon the cream surface and chill it immediately and thoroughly. When wrapping it, press the film against the cream; don't forget the edge of the bowl. Do not allow any air between the cream and the cling film, or a skin will form.

= = = = { Recip } = = = =


By Raymond Blanc via BBC food


  • 7 medium free-range egg yolks
  • 75g/3oz caster sugar
  • 25g/1oz plain flour
  • 4 tsp cornflour
  • 500ml/18fl oz whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla syrup
  • caster sugar, for dusting

Preparation method

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until they turn a pale blonde colour.
  2. Whisk in the flour and cornflour and set aside.
  3. Place the milk and vanilla syrup in a heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring to a boil and simmer for about five minutes.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool for 30 seconds.
  5. Pour the hot milk onto the egg mixture, whisking all the time, then return the mixture to the pan. It is important to pour the hot milk onto the cold eggs before you return the mixture to the pan to prevent the eggs from scrambling.
  6. Bring the mixture back to the boil and simmer for one minute, whisking continuously, or until smooth.
  7. Pour the cream into a clean bowl and dust with icing sugar to prevent a skin forming.

No comments:

Post a Comment