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Roasted cherries & coconut milk custard

cherries and coconut milk pastry creamI ate this for dinner tonight. And I am tempted to eat it for dessert. And maybe for breakfast too.

Last night I had a bowl of frozen veggies because I got distracted planning a trip and forgot to eat dinner. (Blondie and I are going to Dallas for the Gluten Free Expo. I will be talking on the public stage. You should come. We ate our way through the Chicago one and I can’t wait for this one. I have never been to Texas, so I am really quite excited!)

Tonight I was reading about types of cake and the technical goings ons when you bake. At 8:30 I realized I hadn’t eaten dinner. Oops. Naturally, I decided just to make roasted cherries with star anise with a dairy free pastry cream made from coconut milk and rum. Because, you know, normal people do that.

roasted cherries with star aniseBlondie and I had these cherries last Saturday night (although with amaretto) on top of vanilla gelato, but there was still half a bag left, so I brought them home with me. (We all know that boys don’t eat fruit when you’re not there to make them) I had been planning on just eating them, but the roasted cherries were just so good, I had to try them again.

The only dairy that is currently in my fridge is a stick and a half of butter. And although these cherries would be delightful on a sponge cake or even in crepes, I did not want to spend that much time slaving over a hot stove in the summer. So, I took to Google to see if making a custard was possible with coconut milk. I couldn’t find a non-baked recipe that didn’t require milk, so I thought I would just try making it like pastry cream to see what happened. It worked.

This post was added to Seasonal Sundays on Real Sustenance.

Roasted cherries & coconut milk custard
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Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Serves: 4
Call it custard, pastry cream or a pot de crème, this creamy dessert is easy & perfect topped with roasted cherries. The cherries are adapted from a recipe in Jamie magazine the custard was invented when I realized that I was out of milk.
Ingredients
  • 1 14-ounce can of coconut milk (full fat NOT light)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 100 grams (½ cup) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons rum
  • 1 lb cherries, pitted & halved
  • 5 stars of star anise
Instructions
  1. Prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water. Your pot should nest in the bowl that you are going to use for your ice bath.
  2. Warm coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Stirring occaisionally so that the fat and the water re-homoginize. Add the salt.
  3. Mix together egg yolks & sugar until smooth and creamy. Add cornstarch and combine.
  4. Once the milk starts to steam but not simmer, add about a half cup to the egg mixture to temper the eggs. This is important. If you don’t slowly raise the temperature of the eggs, you will have lumpy scrambled egg-like stuff.
  5. Add the tempered egg mixture to the milk and add the rum. Stir constantly for about 5 minutes. The custard is ready when there is a trail left behind the spoon as you stir.
  6. Place the saucepan over the ice bath. Stir every 5 minutes or so for a half hour to keep a skin from forming.
  7. While the custard is cooling, you can halve and pit your cherries (as long as you remember to keep stirring your custard). Turn on your broiler. About 20 minutes into the cooling process is when you want to get your cherries in the oven.
  8. Place the cherries on a baking sheet, pour on the rum and add the anise. Place under the broiler for 5 minutes. Stir them up and continue baking them for another 5 minutes.
  9. Divide the custard into 4 bowls and top with the cherries.
Notes

Included in the prep time is the prepping of the cherries and the cooling off period. I wouldn’t substitute any other milks because their fat content won’t be high enough. Also, do not use light coconut milk.

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