A Crème Anglaise is one of the first things we’re taught in Patisserie at Le Cordon Bleu. One of the building blocks of patisserie, it literally translates to ‘English Cream’. Essentially a custard, this is one of the most versatile sauces I use extremely often when I’m off creating new entremets. I may play with flavours and new techniques and textures but a basic technique I stick to is this one. The flavours you can add to it are endless and it always gives your trifle a gourmet feel when you swap Brown & Polson with a homemade custard. This crème is used as a base for mousses, Bavarian crème, & ice cream. It can be poured over warm gateaux; once baked it can be consumed as crème brûlée. It works amazingly well in layered puddings or as a tart filling, the list is basically endless.
250ml full cream milk
65g caster sugar
3 egg yolks
1/2 vanilla pod or any other flavouring like cinnamon, mint or cocoa
5ml of grand marnier, cointreau, Kailua, baileys or any other liquor optional
Split the vanilla pod and scrape the beans out. Add the pod and beans to the milk.
Heat the milk gently in a saucepan till steamy, add half the sugar to the milk.
Whisk the yolks and add the rest of the sugar to them, continue whisking till the yolks are pale and fluffy, this is called blanching.
add half the hot milk in the yolks, combine and add this mixture to the rest of the milk on the heat.
Slowly cook out the egg yolks and wait for the custard to thicken while constantly stirring the mixture with a rubber spatula to ensure one doesn’t end up with scrambled eggs.
once the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and isn’t runny anymore. Take it off the heat, discard the vanilla pod and chill in the refrigerator.
Once chilled, you can add a liquor corresponding to the flavour you have opted for. This gives the custard a slight kick and cuts the creaminess. It’s optional.
Let your imagination run wild with what you choose to do with it, It stays for 3 days in the refrigerator or up to a month in the freezer.