- 2 1/4 cups milk
- 1 vanilla bean or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 2 whole eggs
- 6 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 additional beaten eggs
- 2 to 3 cups fresh cake or bread crumbs
- Confectioners' sugar
- Grand Marnier (optional)
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- Butter an 8-inch square pan. If using, split vanilla bean lengthwise, scrape
it with the back edge of a knife, and add it to the cream — pod, seeds and
- In a heavy medium-size saucepan, barely boil the milk with the vanilla bean.
If using vanilla extract, add it after custard has cooked.
- Sift together flour, cinnamon and salt.
- Stir in lemon zest and set mixture aside.
- Beat eggs, yolks and sugar together in another heavy pot. While whisking, slowly
add hot milk.
- Add flour mixture, whisking well to combine. Switching to a wooden
spatula, stir mixture constantly over medium heat until it thickens. When mixture
boils, stir hard for 2 FULL minutes. The custard should stand up in peaks.
- Remove from heat. If using vanilla extract, add it now.
- Spread custard in the buttered pan. It will look grainy.
- Chill until set, about 4 hours or overnight.
- Cut cold custard into diamonds or other attractive shapes.
- Dip each diamond into
beaten egg, then roll in crumbs.
- Deep fry in oil or shortening heated to 350 degrees
F on a candy thermometer. The diamonds will sink at first. When they are golden
brown and gloat, they're done. Fried custard should not be doughy, but smooth
- Drain on paper towels, then arrange on a pretty platter.
- Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar and a few drops of Grand Marnier, if desired.
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