I’m back for round two, custard.
But we can call this one a draw.
I didn’t break you this time (for which the point goes to me, contrary to the rules in other sports) and you are supremely tasty (I’m taking the point for that too) but you didn’t really thicken (point: you) and your thinness puzzled me when it came to pairing you with dark chocolate (two all).
Serving Method One, the martini glass with dark chocolate floats, was definitely easier to eat, but Serving Method Two, the tiny bowl with dark chocolate melted over the entire surface like an impenetrable creme brulee, had more delicious chocolate. What’s better? Something that is easy to eat or something that has more chocolate?
Custard is full of mysteries and conundrums like that.
Basically, after my first terrible run-in with custard, I threw away the recipe and started studying custard theory instead. I looked up a range of ideal ratios for the three fundamental ingredients, researched what else could and shouldn’t be added, and learned the warning signs of impending disaster.
I took all this information and I carefully and scientifically improvised an almond milk custard with tahini, sweetened until it tastes rather like halvah, which is the most delicious thing that sesame knows how to be.
So yes, I carefully and scientifically improvised a totally delicious custard, which failed to fully thicken. Thickening is crucial to custard success. I wrote the recipe out below, and I’d love to hear your ideas about where I may have gone the most wrong, because there absolutely will be a round three. I cannot be defeated. I beat all custard!
Sweet Sesame Custard
- 2 cups almond milk
- 6 eggs
- 2 Tbsp tahini
- 2 Tbsp sugar
- Separate three of the eggs and save the whites for another purpose. Place three whole eggs and three separated egg yolks in a large bowl.
- Beat eggs, tahini and sugar together until smooth and pale and bubbly.
- Scald almond milk gently over medium heat. (This is a lot like scalding cow’s milk: heat it until you see tiny bubbles around the edges, but remove it from the heat before it boils.)
- Continue to beat the eggs as you slowly and gradually add the scalded milk to the egg mixture.
- Return the milk-egg-tahini-sugar mixture to the pot and heat over low-to-medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Transfer to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap so that the film touches the surface of the custard. Refrigerate until set and serve cold, with dark chocolate.