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Category: Desserts

Basic Pastry Cream

One of life's great ironies is that the perfect time to bake fruit tarts is in the summer, when it's too hot to turn on the oven. Peaches, plums, berries, nectarines ... no matter how beautiful the fruit might be, ... Read more

Total time: 20 minutes plus 1 hour chilling | Makes 2 cups, enough filling for 1 (9-inch) tart
  • 2 cups milk
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Step 1Warm milk in medium nonreactive saucepan until tiny bubbles appear.

Step 2Meanwhile, whisk yolks and sugar in medium bowl until pale yellow. Add cornstarch and salt to yolks and whisk well. Pour warmed milk into yolk mixture 1/2 cup at a time while continually stirring.

Step 3Return mixture to saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and scrape into bowl. Whisk in vanilla, then cover with plastic wrap laid directly on surface and chill completely, about 1 hour. Whisk pastry cream until smooth before using.


Coconut Variation: Replace 1 cup milk with 1 cup canned coconut milk and omit vanilla.

Each of 6 serving:
188 calories; 99 mg sodium; 279 mg cholesterol; 7 grams fat; 25 grams carbohydrates; 6 grams protein; 0.01 gram fiber.
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