Pastry Cream (Crème Patisserie)

"Pastry Cream (Crème Patisserie) is a starch bound custard, which means that it gets most of its thickening strength from some form of starch (e.g. Flour, Cornstarch, Arrowroot). This recipe is the perfect base for many dessert custards, creams and fillings."
photo by Mark F. photo by Mark F.
photo by Mark F.
Ready In:
3 Cups




  • In a large saucepan, heat the Milk, Sugar, Vanilla and Salt to a gentle simmer, completely dissolving the Sugar. Stir frequently as Milk can easily scorch over high heat.
  • While the Milk mixture comes to a simmer, whisk together the Egg Yolks and Cornstarch in a large bowl until smooth.
  • Once the Milk mixture reaches temperature, slowly pour approximately half of it into the Egg mixture while whisking, tempering the Egg mixture. Return the saucepan to the stove and pour all of the tempered Egg mixture back into the saucepan.
  • With the saucepan over medium heat, return the mixture to a gentle simmer while whisking actively. Once it is simmering, continue to cook the Pastry Cream for two minutes, whisking constantly.
  • Chef's Note: It is important to monitor your heat. Boiling the Pastry Cream for a full two minutes in necessary to activate the starches, but you do not want to burn the mixture.
  • After two minutes, remove the saucepan from the heat. To cool the Pastry Cream, prepare a sheet tray by fully wrapping it with plastic wrap. Pour the Pastry Cream in a thin layer over the prepared sheet tray. Place another piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the Pastry Cream to prevent a skin from forming. Once the Pastry Cream has cooled to room temperature, place it in the refrigerator.
  • Storage: The Pastry Cream can be stored in the refrigerator for three to four days. It should not be frozen. Before using Pastry Cream that has been refrigerated, beat it with a paddle attachment for several minutes to make it smooth again.

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