This sauce goes excellently with any chocolate cake.
Split the vanilla pod longitudinally, scrape out the seeds and mix in a bowl with the egg yolks and sugar. Bring the milk, with the empty vanilla pod immersed, to just below boiling point, then pour the scalded milk into the egg-yolk bowl, whisking as you go. It is important that you only whisk this mixture enough to amalgamate. Wash the milk pan, and return the contents of the bowl to it. Cook over a medium flame, continuously stirring, until the custard (because that’s what it is) thickens. How thick? Depends how brave you are. A good coating consistency should be the baseline but if you feel up to taking it a step further to’ full-on’ custard, so much the better. When the custard has thickened to your satisfaction, remove at once from the heat, add the cream and stir thoroughly. While the custard is cooling, put the ginger and its syrup in a liquidiser and purée. Add about half the custard and give it another blast in the machine. Combine the gingered and plain custards and refrigerate until needed.
© 1999 Alastair Little. All rights reserved.