As I mentioned last week when I made my own pesto I’ve been trying to rely on pre made food less and make more of my own food from scratch.
I would love to become a food purist -someone who only eats food made from fresh ‘real’ ingredients no e numbers or chemicals – but being wholly realistic that’s never going to happen in my house.
For starters I enjoy junk food! I enjoy the occasional Dominoes pizza, eating out at restaurants and Cadburys chocolate. Somedays I need the convenience of being able to pick up the phone and have a comforting, gooey, greasy mess on a plate between me and the TV in 40 minutes or less.
On the other side of the coin, it’s shocking some of the things you can buy ready made. I noticed in Tescos that they have started selling microwaveable spanish omelettes. No specialist ingredients, just the equivalent of leftover potatoes and vegetables coated in egg. Something that could be made at home in the same amount of time as microwaving their version.
Before I get too far up on my high horse, I am equally guilty of recipe ignorance. Until a few weeks ago I had never made custard from scratch. In fact if you’d asked me, before the fateful day that I needed custard and was out of powder, ‘would I make it myself?’ I probably would have scoffed at the thought. Make your own custard? sure I’ll get right too it after I finish curing my own bacon and making my own soap!
To my surprise making proper custard is exactly the same as making the powder alternative. You add a sugary yolky mixture to warm milk then heat to thicken.
makes 1 pint
from BBC Good Food
570ml/1 pint milk
55ml/2fl oz single cream
1 vanilla pod or ½ tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs, yolks only
30g/1oz caster sugar
2 level tsp cornflour
Bring the milk, cream and vanilla pod to simmering point slowly over a low heat.
Remove the vanilla pod.
Whisk the yolks, sugar and cornflour together in a bowl until well blended.
Pour the hot milk and cream on to the eggs and sugar, whisking all the time with a balloon whisk.
Return to the pan, (add vanilla extract if using) and over a low heat gently stir with a wooden spatula until thickened.
Pour the custard into a jug and serve at once.
To keep hot, stand the jug in a pan of hot water and cover the top with cling film to prevent skin forming.