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The Breakfast Challenge: Pressure Cooker 5 Minute Baked Custard

A bowl of hot custard on a cold winter morning (with banana if you can keep the bush turkeys from getting all of them) and the world is a warm and nurturing place!  It’s high protein and doesn’t need much sugar, so it fits the Witches Kitchen version of healthy, and in a pressure cooker it takes 7 minutes from first thought to first spoonful.

(The Breakfast Cereal Challenge is my 2011 challenge – a year’s worth of breakfast recipes that are quick and easy enough to be a real option for weekdays, and that are preferable, in nutrition, ethics, and taste,  to the overpackaged, overpriced, mostly empty packets of junk food marketed as “cereal” .)

The Recipe:

This recipe is super easy once you have sorted the right utensils to fit.  Besides a pressure cooker (which is one of my treasured kitchen tools) you need a ceramic bowl or cup per person, with a lid to fit.  For just me, I use a bowl with a saucer for a lid.  For up to 4 people, I can fit 4 tea cups in my pressure cooker, with saucers from expresso coffee cups as lids  (The tea cup saucers won’t fit).  You could use aluminium foil, but I avoid foil – it costs a huge amount of energy to produce (and thus contributes a huge amount of carbon), and for something that can’t be reused and isn’t easy to recycle in my town, I just don’t think it is worth it.

Ordinary tea cups are fine in my pressure cooker. If you are worried, you may need to do a test run with some cups or bowls that you won’t be upset to break.

This is the recipe for a single serve.  You can multiply by as many servings as will fit in your pressure cooker.

Put the pressure cooker on with a cupful of water in it.

Heat half a cup of milk per person in a small pot until it starts to rise.

Use a food processor, stick blender, or egg beater to beat together, for each person:

  • ½ cup of hot milk (full cream or semi-skim)
  • 1 small egg
  • half a teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • 1 small teaspoon of treacle

There are two tricks to this.

  1. You need to blend before the egg starts to cook, so it needs to be quick.  I get the egg, vanilla and treacle ready in the blending bowl while the milk is heating, pour in the milk, and blend.
  2. Ideally you want to create the least possible amount of froth so you have that silky texture right to the top.  I find with my stick blender, if I submerge the blender before I hit the trigger it does this nicely.

Pour the mix into your cups or bowls and sprinkle a tiny pinch of nutmeg on top.  Cover with lids, and sit them in the little tray on top of the trivet in your pressure cooker.

Put the lid on, bring to pressure, turn down the heat so it is just burbling and cook for 5 minutes.  Then turn the heat off and let off the pressure slowly, ie, by releasing the pressure valve, not by running under cold water.

They are good cold, but to my mind, the glorious way to eat is hot custard with banana on a cold winter morning.

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{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial June 18, 2011, 7:40 am

    Great post, Linda, and not just for the quick and delicious custard, but also because I read your posts on up-gardening and exponential wildlife as a consequence! Now…are you allowed to eat bush turkeys? I know they drive people bonkers…

  • Linda Woodrow June 18, 2011, 9:11 am

    They are protected native species, but I have heard they are delicious in a Turkish style stew. I joke that I’m just breeding and fattening them up waiting for the real food shortage, when I’ll be one of the richest people around with enough turkey meat to keep us fed for years!

  • dixiebelle June 20, 2011, 10:34 am

    Hi Linda,
    I wanted to leave a comment on your Winter Solstice post but it says that Comments are Closed for this Entry?

    It sounds like a wonderful tradition & community event, I love how your kids come home for it, and the swapping of gifts… and your scarecrow looks great too!

  • Linda June 21, 2011, 10:40 am

    thanks for letting me know – technology is so frustrating sometimes! It is a really beautiful tradition, one I look forward to every year.

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