The perfect crème patisserie (pastry cream)


100 g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar, divided

480 ml (2 cups) whole milk

4 large egg yolks

30 g (2 tbsp) unsalted butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

30 g (1/4 cup) cornstarch


  • Heat the Milk*
  • In a medium saucepan, heat the whole milk over medium heat until it just starts to boil. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Whisk the Egg Yolks*
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks with half of the granulated sugar (50 g) until the mixture is pale and thick.
  • Combine Dry Ingredients*
  • Add the cornstarch to the egg yolk mixture and whisk until smooth and fully combined.
  • Temper the Eggs*
  • Slowly pour the hot milk into the egg yolk mixture while constantly whisking to prevent the eggs from curdling. Continue until all the milk is incorporated.
  • Cook the Mixture*
  • Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and place it over medium heat. Whisk continuously until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil. This may take a few minutes.
  • Add Remaining Ingredients*
  • Once thickened, remove the saucepan from the heat. Add the remaining sugar (50 g), unsalted butter, and vanilla extract. Whisk until the butter is melted and everything is well combined.
  • Cool the Pastry Cream*

Transfer the pastry cream to a bowl. To prevent a skin from forming on top, press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the cream. Allow it to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until completely chilled.


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