Thursday, September 13, 2012
#231 Go nuts with Caramel Custard!!
It was a dark and stormy night. The rain was hitting hard against the parched dry earth and the air almost felt as if it has been washed of all impurities. I feel good knowing that my plants are finally getting their last refreshing shower for the rest of the season. The most-needed rain made me crave for a simple dessert something nutty and caramelly!! I toasted some cashews and blanched almonds before melting the sugar into a golden colored caramel --a fun way to give the creamy soft custard a crunchy topping. A perfect way to add a smoky golden crust on top of the intensely brown and gooey caramel oozing around the floating custard when it will be done.
In every region, country or state in the world there is some form of egg-based custard- either steamed or baked. Is this because eggs and milk are easily available or is this a simple protein rich dessert? Every culture has its own version and for some reason 'caramel custard' always comes to mind when I have a craving for a comforting dessert. The only cumbersome part in this recipe is when you must anxiously wait for the custard to be baked in the oven while the sweet aroma wafts through the kitchen!! Some like it cold and some like it hot.... but I could hardly wait to get a warm slice of the custard before I let it cool in the fridge for the rest of my family:)
1/2 cup mixed nuts(almonds and cashews)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tspn salt
1 tspn vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups whole milk or cream
How to make it:
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, Sprinkle 1/2 cup sugar evenly over the bottom of a small heavy skillet and cook slowly over very low heat stirring until sugar just melts to a golden brown color, If the sugar is cooked too long and at high temp it will be too dark and taste burned.
2. Add chopped nuts and pour the syrup into the bottom of a 5-cup ring mold and coat evenly.
3. In a large bowl, with a wire whisk beat eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla extract . Gradually add the milk beating until smooth.
4. Place the prepared ring mold in a shallw baking pan Place the baking pan on the middle rack of the oven. Pour hot water into the pan gently about 1-2 inches deep.
5. Bake for about 55-60 minutes. or until a butter knife inserted in it comes out clean.
6. Do not overbake, the custard will continue to bake after removal from the oven. Remove the mold from hot water to cool over a rack and refrigerate to chill.
7. If you prefer, you can use ramekins for indivdual custards by dividing the caramel between the ramekins and follow the steps #4 to #6. Enjoy:)
Labels: DISHES FROM KERALA