Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Steamed Palm Sugar Custards

I've been waiting to make these now for a couple weeks, but was waiting for some star anise in my spice shipment. I'd forgotten to order it in my big shipment last month, so I had to put in a special order just to get some star anise. Okay, to be fair, once I get on that site I'm like a kid in a candy store (or a foodie in a spice shop) and I can never limit my order to just one or two things. It's just so stimulating, thinking of all the different flavors and concoctions that can be made from such an amazing variety of spices. I can't imagine what I'd be like if I worked in a store geared towards gourmet food or spices. I'd be one broke ass cook - but I'd eat like a queen! In all fairness I think I did okay.

Of course, as my luck would have it, I was rummaging through my spice cupboard this evening(yes, an entire cupboard devoted to spices) for my cassia sticks, lo and behold - a small baggie of star anise. Friggin' go me and my stellar memory. I totally could've made these weeks ago. Blech.

On to the custards...

These were delicately flavored with an interesting texture. The egginess came through a little stronger than I expected, and with the steaming it became more of a sponge-like consistency as opposed to a custard. To be honest it was a little reminiscent of rice pudding. I think that may be because I only had 1/2 cup of heavy cream instead of the 1 cup required. I instead used some whole milk I had left over from another recipe (I didn't realize whole milk was so...whole. I've been drinking FF for waaaay too long.) to total the 1 1/2 cups total dairy for the recipe. I imagine it would be more custard-like with twice the amount of cream than I used.

I highly recommend these as a light after dinner dessert, or even as a take along snack at lunch. I have the distinct feeling I may in fact eat every single dish of custard tonight...

Steamed Palm Sugar Custards

1/2cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup grated palm sugar
1 star anise, broken into pieces
1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces
2 eggs

Place the milk, cream, sugar, star anise, and cinnamon in a saucepan over low heat and cook for ten minutes. Do not boil. Remove from heat and strain the mixture. Beat the eggs lightly and whisk into the milk mixture.

Pour the mixture into 4-6 ramekins and place in a bamboo steamer over a wok of rapidly simmering water and steam for 25 minutes, or until custards are just set.


Sarah said...

Gorgeous photos! I love the fact that you used palm sugar, too. Custards are a challenge for me; sometimes I get that eggy taste that I find offputting. This looks beautiful, though; I'll have to give it a try!

Kristin said...

Oh yes, heavy cream will give it an amazing texture. I have a recipe for custard that's pretty much all heavy cream, with a bit of whole milk, and it's great. I don't even really like custard much, but I like this, and my husband loves it so much he calls it "the nourishment" and requests it whenever he's sick.

Syrie said...

Your custards look and sound gorgeous. Beautiful presentation.

Doug DuCap said...

Oh this definitely sounds extremely delicious!

Sweet Bird said...

sarah - Thank you! I'm hoping to eventually get to "Less-than-Suck" Status as a food photographer.

Kristin - that actually sounds startlingly similar to something my husband says about soup.

Syrie - Thank you!

Doug - It is delicious! And so incredible easy if you have a bamboo steamer.

Elizabeth said...

these photographs are gorgeous. being an amateur photographer myself, i think food is a great subject for any photo :).

redmenace said...

Simply lovely.

Tiare said...

I just happened to stumble on this blog, this is a great post! i`ll try to make these.

I have a cocktail/tikidrink/rum/food blog: