Bring the cream to boiling point and keep it boiling for exactly 1 minute (this timing seems to be important). Then pour it rather slowly and stirring constantly into the well-beaten egg yolks. Beat for a minute and return to the heat, but stirring over boiling water (or above very low direct heat) until it thickens well – naturally never allow to boil again. On no account add sugar to this cream – the whole point of the traditional dish is that the cream is unsweetened. Pour into a wide, shallow fireproof serving dish. Chill well -overnight is preferable. Cover the cold cream with a
Mrs Rundle, writing in 1819, gives this recipe exactly, but it is also a speciality of two or three of the Cambridge colleges. Almond biscuits are good served with it. I was once given a variant which had muscat grapes, peeled, stoned and well drained, laid in a layer in the bottom of the dish under the cream. Their flavour with the cream is most elegant.
©1975 The Estate of Elizabeth Ayrton