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Crème Anglaise

Updated February 23, 2016
This image courtesy of Shutterstock

Prepare ahead: The sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated until required.

CostInexpensive

Moderate

Total Timeunder 15 minutes

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Recipe Coursedessert

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Taste and Texturecreamy, sweet

Type of Dishdessert sauce, sauces

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, or 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp sugar

Instructions

Heat the milk and vanilla bean, if using, in a medium saucepan until it bubbles from around the edges. Remove from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Using the tip of a knife, scrape half of the seeds from the bean into the milk. Rinse the vanilla bean and save for another use.

Beat the yolks and sugar in a heatproof bowl. Gradually whisk in the hot milk. Rinse and dry the saucepan, and return the milk mixture to the pan.

Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the spoon (an instant-read thermometer will read 185°F(85°C)). Do not boil.

Strain through a sieve into a bowl. If not using the vanilla bean, stir in the vanilla extract. To serve warm, use immediately. Or place plastic wrap directly on the surface, pierce a few holes in the wrap, and let cool.

Variation:

Citrus Crème Anglaise

Add the grated zest of 1 lemon or orange to the strained custard.

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