This tastes just like pumpkin pie. Awesome.
This is yet another recipe that’s been hanging out on my counter for the better part of the last year. I had actually hoped to make this a month ago or so (back when everyone was making everything pumpkin flavored) but no. Not quite. So I made it now. Having never made custard before, this was an interesting experiment. I didn’t find it overly difficult, but there are a lot of steps and a few places where you have to get it right or the whole thing is ruined. I had hoped to make these for dessert one night after work but when I re-read the recipe and saw that it needed to chill for 6 hours or so, I wound up doing it in the middle of the day. Which is another story but not one for here.
Here are a few key things you have to be careful with —
1) separating the eggs. I’ve separated plenty of eggs and I usually just use the shells, being careful not to poke the yolk. (Hey that rhymes.) but we do have this little tool so I thought I’d use that. It worked ok but it is hard to use two hand with an egg (yes I can crack an egg one handed but this didn’t seem like the time to pull out that kitchen trick) AND hold the little tool. But in the end I only lost one egg which I managed to catch before it ruined the whole thing. So, be careful when separating. You need the yolks with no, or very little, white.
2) tempuring the eggs. When it comes time to add the heated up cream to the egg mixture you have to be very careful as to not add too much of the hot at once or the eggs will curdle and you done. Add a little bit, very slowly, whisking like crazy. This will bring up the temp of the eggs (while slightly cooling the other stuff) and allow you to then add the rest of the hot. But you still need to do that slowly, whisking the whole time.
3) taking the cups in and out of the oven. You’ve got to put water in a pan around the cups (by the way, I used a metal jelly roll pan as I didn’t have a casserole dish big enough to hold all 6 cups). Very carefully transfer it to the oven. Try not to spill water and try not to splash water in the cups (seems like a hard thing to do but I’ve always heard people caution on that). When taking them out, be extra careful. Actually the first thing is when opening the oven, stand to the side since a cloud of steam will come out and you don’t need that in your face (speaking from experience). Once done, which was closer to the 50 minutes, I pulled the rack out and took each cup out individually. Then I carefully pulled the pan full of hot water out and dumped it in the sink.
I think it turned out great, although it’s not very maple-y. As I said at the beginning, it tastes just like pumpkin pie and who doesn’t like that? (Yes, yes, I’m sure someone doesn’t but that’s not the point).