Rich vanilla pastry cream is the classic filling for cream puffs. Perfect served simply over fresh berries, in fruit tartlets or in a Boston cream pie.
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 cups milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 3/4 tsp. vanilla
- BEAT egg yolks in medium bowl or glass measure; gradually STIR IN milk until blended.
- MIX sugar, cornstarch and salt in large heavy saucepan.
- GRADUALLY stir in a small amount of milk mixture, making a smooth paste. Gradually stir in remaining milk mixture until blended.
- COOK over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and comes to a boil, 20 to 25 minutes.
- BOIL and stir 1 minute.
- REMOVE from heat immediately.
- COOL quickly: Set pan in larger pan of ice water.
- STIR occasionally and gently for a few minutes to hasten cooling.
- STIR IN vanilla.
- PRESS piece of plastic wrap onto surface of pastry cream to prevent a “skin” from forming.
- REFRIGERATE until thoroughly chilled, at least 1 hour.
Yields: 3-1/2 cups, enough to fill 12 large cream puffs or éclairs
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