Custard recipe used to be one of those breakfasts we were always served with alongside with beans porridge before heading off to school every morning. Custard is a very sweet and easy to prepare food, it is a type of pudding that can cause easy satietyto kids and adults, but then whenever I take custard early in the morning to school, I used to fall asleep until the first lesson was over. What made custard so heavy for me then; was as the result of the beans it was always served with. I just wanted to bring back the childhood memories and the taste of this pap I used to enjoy then, which is why, I came up with the idea of preparing it and I hope that you will also like to try this out too. But before the preparation, I just want to say this; custard can be very simple but tricky to prepare, and a little mistake can either lead to lumpy, uncooked and a watery custard pudding. However, a little skill is needed for making this quick pudding. Additionally, custard can be prepared into a very thick consistency and into a light consistency, depending on ones choice.
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What is custard?
Custard is a thick pudding or pap made from corn starch. Custard comes mostly in orange or yellowish colour and it is usually sold in sachets and in containers. Custard is made by dissolving corn starch with cold water into a smooth paste, and then pouring boiled water over it, while stirring constantly until it thickens into a thick viscous consistency. Sugar and milk are usually added to custard as sweeteners. However, a lot of people enjoy taking custard with bread, akara, moi -moi (bean cakes), porridge beans, potato chips, egg, plantain chips, yam chips, biscuits,egg coated yam fries and cakes.
Custard sometimes resembles pumpkin soup in terms of its velvety feel in the mouth, but the taste, I will liken it to the taste of akamu (the wet form of corn starch usually prepared in Nigeria using the same method of custard). Since both custard and akamu are made from the same source, there is no much difference, the only difference between both is that custard is the processed form of dried corn starch which is already spiced with vanilla, banana or pineapple flavour, and with addition of food colouring agent, while akamu is the wet form of corn starch, a non-spiced or sometimes spiced with ginger and dried red chillies.
Making of custard sometimes, could seem very simple, but I bet you, it is not as simple as you may think, except you are already an expert in it. You will really need to be carefully by simply following some simple tips in order to make a lump free (smooth) and a thick consistency custard pap. Some of these tips are:
- You have to dissolve the custard powder first with cold water into a thick and smooth paste, just like you would have done to flour barter used for pancakes. You need an equal part of cold water for whatever quantity of custard powder youre going to be making.
- The water must be brought to a boil before stirring it into the custard mixture.
- While pouring the hot water into the mixture, you have to keep stirring constantly until you notice the custard becoming thickened and the whitish mixture fading away.
- It is preferably to make the custard thick first before adjusting it, instead of making a watery custard and unable thicken it again; since you can easily add more hot water to it to adjust the thickness to your desired consistency.
- Milk and sugar should be added after the custard has been made, as these ingredients tend to make custard watery when they are added during the initial stage.
Custard can be served both as breakfast and as dinner, and it is usually used as a substitute to breast milk for toddlers after weaning. There are other things that can be added to custard after it is being prepared, such as: chocolates, lemon juice, whipping cream, sugar whole milk flavour (vanilla or any fruit flavour).
Ingredients for making custard
- 4 tablespoons custard powder
- 150ml cold water for the mixing of the custard powder
- 2 cups of boiled water for making custard mixture into a pudding
- A spoon or a spatula for stirring the pudding
- 2-3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 100g whole milk (liquid or powdered milk)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence, I used banana flavour. Some custard powders dont come with flavour in them.
- Bread or akara (bean cakes) for the serving
Procedures on how to make perfect custard
- Using a pot or a kettle, heat up 2- cups of water and bring to a boil.
- While the water is bubbling, pour in custard powder into a wide bowl and add a little water into it. Wisk the custard until it turns into a thick but smooth runny mixture.
- Custard can easily become harden after it has been dissolved, so stir it ones more to loosen it before adding hot water to stir
- The water should have been ready by now. Bring the water off from heat and with one hand gently pour it into the custard mixture, while stirring the mixture with the other hand. You have to pour the water into the mixture consistently, but in a slow manner until you notice the mixture setting and becoming thick.
- When you notice the custard becoming thick and whitish mixture fading away, reduce the rate at which you pour in the hot water and keep stirring until you it is completely smooth and thickened
- Stop adding the water so that the custard will not become watery at this stage.
- When you have done these, it means you have succeeded in making a lump free custard pap. Add some sugar and milk to the custard and enjoy it while it is still hot.
Steps on how to make custard in 5 minutes
1. Heat up a bout 2 cups of water on a stove top andlet the water boil.
2. While the water is on the stove, pour the custard powder into a wide bowl and dissolve it with an equal part of cold water. make sure you dissolve it completely until there is no resistant between the spoon and the custard mixture.
3. Just before you stir in the hot water, whisk the custard mixture again becuase it will definately set at the bottom of the bowl; this is to prevent it from forming lump when the hot water is introduced into it.
4. Bring the hot water off from heat and with one hand gently pour it into the custard mixture, while stirring the mixture with the other hand. You have to pour the water into the mixture consistently, but in a slow manner until you notice the mixture setting and becoming thick.
5. When you notice the custard becoming thickened andthe whitish mixture fading away into deep yellow mixturein the bowl, give a break and stop adding the water. Stir the custard thoroughlyto enable it combine with the water and become even.
6. Scoop the custard pudding into a serving dish.
Add some sugar and any milk or cream of your choice to the custard
7. Stir the mixture and enjoy it while it is still hot
Important things to note while making custard
- If you mistakenly make a watery custard consistency, there is no need to worry and you dont need to throw that away, all you need to do is to pour the watery custard into a pan or pot and on a low heat, and then make another mixture of runny custard paste and stir the mixture into the watery custard; as you are stirring this in, you have to keep turning the content and you will notice it becoming thick and blending. Immediately it is thick, take it off from heat.
- Custard needs to be dissolved completely before stirring in hot water, to prevent it from becoming lumpy.
- Cold custard can be warmed again, by heating up water in a pan, and then pouring the custard into a plate and placing it inside the pot of hot water. Stir this as it is becomeshot.
- Custard is a very a smooth and fantastic pudding which can be enjoyed at all times, it is as simple as making acha pudding and rice pudding (kunu rice), it may take you just 5 minutes to prepare custard pudding in your kitchen.
- Now, that was a very simple recipe to make at the comfort of your home, why not try this out and give us your feedback.
Dr. Brown is the founder of Jotscroll, he is a Medical Doctor, Entrepreneur, and author. Dr. Razi Brown holds a medical degree from the University of San Diego. He has invested in many startups and is currently working on his fifth book to be published in the upcoming year.