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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Grapenut custard

I had this dessert at the Scargo Cafe in Dennis, MA while on vacation attending my brother's wedding.  Delicious!  And I'm assured by Massachusetts-ians that this is a bona fide regional specialty rather than some BS branding strategy hatched by the State Department of Tourism (Indiana Hardwoods, anyone?). 

This is a great way to use up a large number of eggs, if you find yourself with a surplus (you know who you are out there, you chicken-raisers).  I think this could be made with whatever cereal you want, though using, say, Cocoa Krispies would detract from the authenticity of the dish.  If you want to make a half recipe (this does make a lot, but it keeps well in the fridge), halve all the ingredients...I'd use 5 large eggs or 4 jumbo...and bake this in an 8x8 dish.  Start checking for doneness after 60 minutes. 

The Scargo Cafe's recipe is found here, but I thought it was lacking in, er, directions. Here are my directions. 

Grapenut Custard
Makes 12 servings

9 eggs
2 cups sugar
2 tbsp vanilla
8 cups whole milk or light cream
1 cup Grapenuts cereal
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg

Beat together eggs and sugar until very well combined.  Stir in vanilla and milk/cream.  In a small bowl, combine cereal and spices.

To bake this dish, get a large roasting pan that is bigger than a 13x9 baking dish (if you use a foil roasting pan, put it on a baking tray first so that you have something sturdy to move the contraption on).  Put the 13x9 dish in the roasting pan.  Position it close to the oven. 

Bain-marie set-up
Pour the egg-milk mixture into the 13x9 dish.  Sprinkle the cereal-spice mixture over the top.  Fill the roasting pan around the baking dish with 2-3 quarts of hot tap water, making sure the water level comes at least 3/4 of the way up the sides of the baking dish.  CAREFULLY move the water-filled roasting pan to the oven.  This is your water bath, or bain-marie. 

Bake at 325F for 90 minutes.  Start checking for doneness about 10 minutes before, and continue cooking until the center of the custard is jiggly without being liquid (find me on Facebook for a video of what finished custard should look like).  Do not overbake, as the custard will continue cooking when you remove it from the oven.  Pin It

1 comment:

  1. I love custard, LOVE custard….Gotta try this!!