Servings: 18 Prep: 1 mins Cook: 15 mins Total: 16 mins
I LOVE pastry cream! This is the magical pudding like custard you’ll find inside a cream filled doughnut, éclair, cream puff, pastry tart, cream horn, or a nice full Boston Cream Pie! One of my absolute favorite desserts is one called Mille Feuille (pronounced something like “Me Fwee”, it means “thousand leaves”), which is alternating puff pastry and crème pâtissière, which is then frosted usually with some kind of fun berry or chocolate design. I tried to make this for years, always running into issues of consistency. It would be too thin, or it would turn “chunky” or it would simply be a custard. I had to reach outside of typical low-primal ingredients into something occasionally found in the Paleo landscape to achieve the desired consistency. The tapioca flour slightly boosts the carb counts, but … in return, I get pastry cream! Hello true Trifles!
Note: Makes roughly eighteen 1/4-cup (60 mL) servings.
Second Note: Resulting in a total of about 4 1/2 cups (1 L), I readily admit that this recipe is quite large. The primary reason for its size is the small amount of glucomannan, in relation to its strength. The glucomannan is a powerful thickener, but it takes on some bizarre qualities in too high a concentration. If I were to write this recipe as a much smaller recipe, then it would ask for 1/4 tsp of glucomannan, which really dramatically decreases the margin for error. My suggestion is to have a plan for lots of pastry cream for the first try. Be prepared to make a super huge trifle or 2 Boston Cream Pies, with hungry mouths nearby. Once you see how it works, then tweak the recipe the second time and cut it into thirds, resulting in only about 1 1/2 cups (360 mL), or about six 1/4-cup (60 mL) servings.
Third Note: The texture is thick, like an American style pudding, but it still somewhat “pools”. For a slightly thicker mixture, that holds up as a filling in something like a cake, add 1 to 2 more tbsp of tapioca flour.
Fourth Note: Another trick to create a lighter, thicker cream that can also be “piped” and hold its form is to fold in whipped cream. This will thicken and aerate the pastry cream.
Crème Pâtissière (Pastry Cream)Print Rate
- 1 1/2 cups cream heavy whipping
- 1 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 each vanilla bean split lengthwise (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
- 3/4 cup 'Swerve' or other sugar replacement
- 3 tbsp tapioca flour
- 1 tsp glucomannan powder
- dash salt
- 9 large egg yolks
- Combine cream and almond milk in a medium sauce pan. Split the vanilla beans, lengthwise, and scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean. Add the pod and seeds to the milk and cream. Bring the milk to a slow simmer.
- While the liquid heats, in a separate small mixing bowl, combine the sweetener, tapioca, glucomannan and salt. Mix them together and set aside.
- In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs well. Set aside.
- Strain the hot liquid, to remove the vanilla pods.
- Very very slowly, whisk the hot milk mixture into the egg yolks. Whisk quickly, so as to incorporate the hot liquid evenly, without cooking or scrambling the eggs. This is called "tempering" the eggs. Once the liquid has been incorporated into the eggs, pour the milk-egg mixture back into the sauce pan and return to a low heat.
- Whisk the powder mixture into the hot liquid. Make sure it dissolves.
- Stir consistently until the sauce thickens. The temperature should be at above 165 F (74 C). Whatever you do, do not boil this mixture. The cream will thicken a bit more as it chills.
- Pour into a wide container, like a casserole pan, so that it's wide and shallow. Place in the refrigerator to cool. It is ready, when it is fully chilled, about 2 to 4 hours.
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