Coconut Pastry Cream

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I like this recipe because it uses coconut milk and is great for anyone who is allergic to the lactose in cow's milk. Use it in place of pastry cream in any of your recipes.

3 large egg yolks
5 tablespoons sugar; divided

1 cup coconut milk; divided
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Whisk together the egg yolks and 3 Tablespoons sugar in a bowl. Whisk the cornstarch and 1/4 cup coconut milk in a small bowl and then add to the egg yolk mixture, whisking to combine. Set aside briefly.

2. Combine 3/4 cup coconut milk with 2 tablespoons sugar in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat on the stove over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and tiny bubbles appear on the edge of the pan.

3. Pour the hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly to prevent the eggs from cooking.

4. Return the entire mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens.

5. Strain the mixture in a fine mesh strainer set over a mixing bowl. Stir in the vanilla.

6. Scrape the pastry cream into a bowl, press a piece of plastic wrap to the surface, and refrigerate until needed.

Transfer the pastry cream to a covered storage container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Pour off excess liquid that forms on top and then stir before using. Does not freeze.

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