Creamy With Texture All In One Custard
A few weeks ago three of my kids and I spent time in Nashville where we were spoiled with wonderful family time and incredibly delicious meals. My cousin, Jackie, does not set foot into the kitchen to cook, if she can help it. You see, Jackie is married to Brett, who by day does amazing things with peoples’ spines and by night prepares meals worthy of the finest eating establishments.
Brett is one of the few people with whom I LOVE to cook. Don’t get me wrong—I love having friends and family keep me company while I cook; but I just do not know many people who have the same passion for food and drink that I do and whose style in the kitchen meshes with mine.
One night we decided to cook from one of Brett’s favorite books, The Family Meal by Ferran Adrià, of the legendary elBulli restaurant in northern Spain. As you may have guessed from Desserts Required, I am very visually oriented. The Family Meal gives recipe instructions within the pictures, which capture each step along the way. I am not sure it is possible to find a more appropriate book for me to work with.
One recipe stood out for me: Pistachio Custard. I love custards. Custards have a smooth and creamy consistency and I find it very difficult to stop at one bite of a very cold custard. There really wasn’t a choice; I had to try this.
One problem: the recipe was for six people and we were nine. I decided to double the recipe, knowing that my goal was to eat a couple of the custards myself. Great idea, poor execution.
I learned after an hour of slaving over the stove that doubling this recipe was not going to work. I should have tweaked the ingredients a bit, starting with the eggs. My custard would not thicken enough.
Not to be dissuaded, I came back to Florida, ordered the cookbook and decided to make the custard for six people. The original recipe called for processing the nuts into the prepared custard, but that did not give me the consistency I was looking for. So I opted to chop the pistachios and stir them in just before transferring the custard to the ramekins.
The end result is custard that is creamy with texture. The roasted, unsalted pistachios offer wonderful flavor, in addition to their consistency, to the pudding.
Now all I have to do is convince Jackie and Brett that they simply must come to Florida to taste the Pistachio Custard. Even though Brett has the same book in Nashville, it’s just more fun to fix it together, with Jackie popping in to see how the food is coming along. Did I happen to mention that Jackie also does a fabulous job cleaning up after our messy cooking? Win/win all around!
|Pistachio Custard|| |
- 6 egg yolks
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 1½ cups whole milk
- ⅔ cup heavy whipping cream
- ¾ cup roasted and unsalted pistachios, chopped
- ½ pint raspberries
- For the custard:
- Set aside 7 – ½ cup ramekins.
- Place the egg yolks and sugar into a large mixing bowl. Whisk until the mixture is pale yellow and slightly thickened.
- Combine the milk and cream into a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil.
- Whisk the boiled milk/cream into the egg yolk mixture, ladleful by ladleful. If the milk is added too quickly, the eggs will curdle.
- Once the milk and eggs have been combined, return to the saucepan. Attach a thermometer to the side of the saucepan. Cook over medium low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and the thermometer reaches 180º, 8-14 minutes.
- Whisk the pudding for one minute to release some of the steam. Add the pistachios and stir until well combined.
- Use a ladle to transfer the pudding to the ramekins. Refrigerate until cold, several hours.
- Either top with raspberries or serve the raspberries on the side.
- Betsy's tidbits:
- The custard may be poured into a 1½ quart bowl rather than individual ramekins.