Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Crème Anglaise

Crème anglaise (French for "English cream") is a light pouring custard used as a dessert cream or sauce. It is a mix of sugar, egg yolks and hot milk, often flavoured with vanilla.
This can be poured as a sauce over cakes or fruits. Alternatively, it can be eaten as a dessert on its own, for example in Île flottante (floating island) or used as base for desserts such as ice cream or creme brulee.
Other names includes 'crème à l'anglaise' (French for English-style cream) and 'crème française' (French for French cream).
Though Custard doesn't have its own word in French (the word for cream, "crème", is used).
The French-Canadians in Quebec invented a word for it, "cossetarde".

This sauce has a very rich, creamy texture and once you have tasted, you will definitely fall in love with it.

Ingredients -

Milk or cream - 1 cup
Egg yolks - 3
Sugar - 1/4 cup
Vanilla essence - 1 tsp


Method -

Warm the milk in a pan, remove it before it reaches boiling point.
In a bowl whisk the yolks and sugar together until it turns pale yellow colour.
Mix around 3-4 tbsp of warm milk in the egg mixture whisking it continuously.
Then, gradually add the remaining milk, whisking constantly.
Pour the mix back into the pan and place it over a medium heat. Stir it continuously so it does not stick to the bottom or the eggs curdle.
Keep cooking and stiring it until the mixture is thick enough to coat
the back of the spoon.
Place it over an ice bath (over a container that is filled with ice or cold water) to prevent it from cooking further.
Strain the custard to remove any bits of egg that may have possibely curdled.
Add the vanilla essence and mix it. When cooled refrigerate it and use it with fresh fruit, cakes or chocolate puddings. 

Notes -

1. The sauce is cooked over low heat (otherwise the yolks will cook, resulting in scrambled eggs) and stirred constantly with a spoon until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, and then removed from the heat.
2. If the sauce reaches too high a temperature, it will curdle. Cooking temperature should be between 70 °C (156 °F) and 85 °C (185 °F)
3. If the eggs have started to curdle then place it in a blender instantly and blend it 2-3 times. It will definitely save from spoiling the anglaise.
4. For a more rich crème Anglaise, use half and half or light cream, or add more egg yolks.

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