Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Eggy Goodness

Egg custard. The simple combination of eggs, vanilla and milk turns into something deeply satisfying. It's a powerful force that can cross boundaries and class. It's great in the eggy, $1-a-slice cafeteria version; comforting in the custard and fruit variety; or tear-enducing in the caramelized-on-top, eaten-with-the-eyes-closed crème brulee rendition.

This recipe for a "Crustless Egg Pie" is a close relative of the cafeteria egg custard. I think the only difference between this and a classic egg custard recipe is the addition of 10 tbs. of flour. I'm not one to question recipes, but 10 tbs. of flour? That has to equal out to a quarter cup or more.

I love this recipe in that in showcases how my great-grandmother's generation refers to whole milk as sweet milk. It speaks to the how much that generation used buttermilk in their cooking - recipes had to distinguish between the two.

I specifically bought whole milk for this recipe, but I think I made a mistake in using small, farm-fresh organic eggs verses the larger grocery-store variety. I probably should have added an extra egg to compensate for the diminuative size of my eggs. This recipe again didn't have a cook temperature, so I played it safe and baked it at 350º until it turned golden brown on top.

We ate it warm out of the oven with fresh blackberries.

It would have benefited greatly from a dollop of fresh, ice-cold whipped cream, which would have cut the sweetness and contrasted nicely with the warm custard. The flour made a nice, tasty crust around the entire dish. This custard was surprisingly better the next day - eaten cold out of the fridge.

There are at least 20 other egg custard recipes in the collection and I look forward to trying other more traditional pies.