Appears in
The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Cuisine

By French Culinary Institute

Published 2021

  • About
Stirred and baked custards have the same ingredients, but stirred custards differ in that they are cooked on top of the stove and are stirred constantly, usually with a wooden spoon or heatproof rubber spatula, to keep them from curdling and sticking to the bottom of the pan. The continual stirring keeps the mixture liquid by preventing the bonding of the eggs, which results in a pudding that is poured as a sauce rather than solidified. The stirring should be steady, with regular sweeps over the bottom and sides of the pan to keep the mixture homogenized. It is important that stirred custards not be heated to more than 77°C (170°F) or they will curdle. It is equally important that they be gently stirred, as aggressive stirring upsets the egg bonding and will result in a runny custard. The slower the custard heats and the more gently it is stirred, the creamier it will be.