Thursday, March 3, 2011

Baked Custard

     What does one do after a very bad day? When one has gone to sleep at 6 am and then woken up at 9 am because one had to read a book that one did not have time to read due to other works earlier? When one has work all morning and class all afternoon and then work at night? Well, one eats baked custard, of course. What else would you do to make yourself feel better?

     I love the idea of baked custard. The recipe I found was Chocolate and Zucchini's and it was French: Oeufs au Lait. But baked custard sounds so deliciously British! I love merging my country-philias. After a long day at class, I came home and started heating up some milk, sugar and vanilla. I added some eggs and put the mixture in the oven. Could anything be easier?

     At least, I meant to make baked custard. I used half of Chocolate and Zucchini's recipe, because I figured that would make sense for my loaf pan. It just shows that I was tired. How could half the recipe for a large casserole dish make sense for a little loaf pan? So, technically, I did not make baked custard. I think I made flan. This meant it took a lot longer to cook than the baked custard would have. My cranky stomach was mad at first. But when I ate it warm out of the oven, slightly sweet but not overwhelming, and all smooth and silky, it made everything seem suddenly bright. Comfort baked in a few eggs and milk, that is all one really needs.

Flan-Baked Custard 
Adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini 

2 cups Milk 
1/3 cup Sugar 
1/2 tsp Vanilla 
3 Eggs 

In a medium saucepan, mix the milk, sugar, and vanilla. At medium heat, heat the mixture to a simmer. Then, take it off the heat and allow it to cool. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Whisk the milk mixture into the eggs. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and put some water to boil. Butter a loaf pan, and pour the milk and egg mixture inside. Put a large roasting pan or baking dish in the oven, and place the loaf pan on it. Fill the roasting pan up to an inch in water, in order to make a water bath for the custard. Bake for about 40 minutes or until the custard looks firm and slightly browned on top. 

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