Creme Anglaise: This rich, creamy vanilla custard sauce will take your desserts to the next level! A classic recipe that’s infinitely versatile, made from just 5 ingredients.
Have you ever heard of Creme Anglaise?
Don’t feel bad if you haven’t- it used to be everywhere but now it’s not something you really see every day. Mostly it’s reserved for fancy French restaurants, but I’m on a mission to make it part of your every day baking!
Just look at that rich sauce! It’s so creamy and its vanilla game is on point. The flavor in this creme anglaise will knock your socks off!
How do you make creme anglaise?
It’s pretty simple really. There are only 5 ingredients and I bet you already have most of them on hand.
The hardest part is just making sure not to scramble the eggs. I have a couple of useful techniques that will help to safeguard this from happening for you:
- Gently warm, or “temper” the yolks by adding the hot liquid in slowly.
- Cook the sauce low and slow, while whisking constantly.
- Strain the sauce through a fine mesh sieve, to remove any lumps or graininess.
- Cool it instantly by placing it into an ice bath just as soon as it thickens up.
If you take these precautions, you should be just fine!
Now, you may have noticed, I said most of the ingredients are probably on hand. I realize not everyone keeps vanilla beans in their baking cupboard! But recently, I started keeping a stash, and I think they’re great to have for certain recipes.
This is definitely one of those recipes!
Real vanilla bean adds so much to this custard sauce. The little black flecks are so pretty, and the heady fragrance and sweet flavor just take this creme anglaise to the next level. If you’re not sure where to get whole vanilla beans, check out the link just above the recipe card, or the ones that are highlighted in the recipe itself. They are totally affordable and you can have them delivered to your doorstep within a few days!
That said, if you’d really prefer not to use whole vanilla beans, you can substitute with 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract.
What can I do with this creme anglaise?
This sauce is so versatile! You can pour it over just about any kind of dessert, and it will make it so much more special!
Try it alongside of some of these favorites:
- Marble Bundt Cake
- Mocha Cream Puffs
- Pear Gingerbread Upside-Down Cake
- Double Chocolate Pecan Pie
- Chocolate Cherry Galette
- Butter Cake
- Rhubarb Tart
- Chocolate Amaretto Torte
These are just a few suggestions; really this sauce is good on just about anything! Honestly I think one of the best ways to enjoy it is just poured over some fresh berries, like you see here!
More great sauce recipes on my “Icings, Frostings, Fillings, & Toppings” Pinterest board!
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- Place the milk in cream in a small saucepan.
- Split the vanilla bean lengthwise with a sharp knife, scrape out the seeds, and add them (along with the empty pod) to the milk and cream mixture.
- Heat the mixture on medium low heat, until small bubbles begin to appear around the edges and wisps of steam are rising from the surface.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar together.
- In a slow, steady stream, pour the hot liquid over the yolk mixture, while whisking.
- When all the liquid has been added, transfer the custard back to the pot and place over low heat, whisking constantly.
- Gently cook until the custard has thickened slightly (it should coat the back of a spoon), about 5 minutes. (Sauce will become thicker as it cools)
- Remove from the heat and pour the sauce through a fine mesh strainer, into a heat-safe vessel.
- Place the heat-safe vessel into a larger bowl filled with ice water, to chill.
- Keep the creme anglaise refrigerated until ready to serve.