Back to basic: let's make crema pasticcera (pastry cream)!
Eggs, milk, sugar and vanilla. Few ingredients to create one of the most popular pâtisserie creams: pastry cream (crema pasticcera - in Italian).
This cream is among the most used in pâtisserie to fill many desserts and pastries: choux, puff pastry desserts (such as cannoncini, vol-au-vent, millefeuille), but also the layers of the most classic pan di Spagna sponge cake! This basic pastry preparation is also used to make semifreddo, puddings and many spoon desserts (dolci al cucchiaio).
It is a very versatile preparation: if you simply change the amount of some ingredients you will obtain different consistencies depending on the use you will make of it!
Here is my recipe!
200 ml whole milk
48-60 gr egg yolk
36 gr caster sugar
12 gr plain flour
12 gr corn flour
1 vanilla pod
Sieve the flour and corn flour on a baking sheet
Put the milk in a pan over the heat with vanilla pod (scraped) and half of the sugar quantity
In a round bowl, blend egg yolks and the other half of sugar and whisk quickly until smooth. Then add in the sieved flour and corn flour.
When the milk starts bubbling on the side (almost boiliing), take 1/3 of the milk and put it in the eggs and whisk (leave the rest on the heat)
Put everything back in the pan with the milk and whisk on a medium heat, fast and checking the side to eliminate lumps
Cook until the cream is thick, boiling and you don’t taste the flour anymore
Spread the cream in a tray to cool down (15-20mins) covered with cling film
You can keep the pastry cream in the fridge for up to 48h, covered with cling film.
Remember to give it a whisk before using it in your cakes/desserts!
Also, this cream can be used as a base for many other creams used in pâtisserie - such as:
- diplomat cream: pastry cream + chantilly cream
- mousseline cream: pastry cream + butter
- chibouste cream: pastry cream + Italian meringue
Develop your creativity and flavour the cream as you wish: with extracts, chocolate, dehydrated fruits, grounded nuts... There are sooooo many things you can try!!
I leave with a picture of one of my favorite things to bake: choux filled with pastry cream... So yummy!!
I hope you will find it easy to make... Feel free to email me your questions but also send me the pics of your creations or tag us in your Instagram stories @dolce_italianpatisserie !!