Crème Anglaise is French for English cream and is a simple custard sauce or pouring custard. The traditional recipe is easy to make with only four ingredients which you most probably already have at home. Egg yolks, milk, sugar, and vanilla are combined and cooked for about 20 minutes, et voilà!
The most important specification of Crème Anglaise is that it is very liquid and easy to pour.
Don’t add any kind of starch or other thickener or cream or it will become a completely different recipe. The slow heating, without letting the mixture boil, will thicken the liquid into a creamy pouring custard. The best way to check the consistency is on the back of a spoon.
The quantity of sugar may vary from 150 gr to 200 gr (3/4 cup to 1 cup) per litre of milk, depending on the sweetness you require.
Is vanilla necessary in Crème Anglaise?
A traditional version requires vanilla, but some people do choose to leave it out. We like to work with vanilla beans or vanilla powder, but vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste can be used. It is important to know that vanilla beans can be added from the start, whereas paste and extract are best added after taking the mixture from the heat.
How long can you store Crème Anglaise?
Although it is easy to make fresh, crème Anglaise can be made one or two days in advance. Chilling it overnight will make it a little thicker which makes it even better. 😊
We recommend making smaller batches and keeping it no longer than 3 days in the fridge.
This custard could be frozen but the texture might change after thawing and it will not be perfect anymore.
Related : Pumpkin custard
Classic Crème Anglaise
- Bring the milk to the boil with the vanilla powder.
- Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a bowl until the mixture becomes pale in colour.
- Gradually whisk the hot milk into the egg yolks and sugar.
- Return the mixture to the saucepan to cook over a low heat.
- With a wooden or plastic spatula stir constantly until the custard thickens and leaves a path when you draw your finger on the back of the spatula. Do NOT boil the Crème Anglaise.
- Strain the vanilla sauce and cool.
- If you use a digital thermometer to cook the Crème Anglaise, the temperature should be 82 to 84°C (180-183°F) maximum. The sauce curdles above this temperature.