Why haven’t I made Spanish Cream before now?
Looking for a recipe to please my aging mother’s waning appetite, I came across the recipe for Spanish Cream. My great-grandmother had given it to me years before; in fact, Grandma had given me several recipes.
I hate to admit it, but I never tried the recipes Grandma gave me for years. She gave me one for Sour Cream Twists because I was heavily into the 4-H bread baking project. Every time she saw me, she would ask if I had made them yet. I didn’t because the recipe looked so very rich and I didn’t think my mother would let me make them.
It was 20 years after Grandma’s death that I finally made those Sour Cream Twists and oh, they were worth every bit of richness. Why, oh why, did I wait?
I had totally forgotten about her Spanish Cream recipe. Maybe this was the moment to make it. And maybe it would help stimulate some memories for my mother. Well, let me tell you. The entire family fell in love with this yummy, healthy, (did I say yummy?) dessert.
Do you have to scald the milk?
I hope you will too. It’s a bit of work, but well worth it. Being an old-fashioned dessert, it calls for scalding the milk. At first I thought, is that necessary? People scalded milk to kill certain bacteria but now that milk is commercially pasteurized, is it necessary? According to Heloise (remember her?) scalding milk is still a good idea and will help the Spanish Cream be fluffier.
Can you skip that step? Probably. The first time I made this, I heated my milk to about 120 degrees and the dessert turned out fine. Just be careful to not add the eggs to overly hot milk because that will curdle (cook) your eggs and cause lumps. We don’t want lumps.
Heating your milk in the microwave will work fine, but give the milk a good stir to distribute the heat before adding to the egg yolks.
Is a double boiler necessary?
Again, nice, best, but not necessary. If you don’t use a double boiler, use a heavy bottom saucepan, stir your milk mixture constantly, and watch it like a hawk. I’ve ruined stirred custards and the makings for ice cream too many times by overheating. Avoid over-cooking by heating the mixture to 160 degrees. If you don’t own a food thermometer, try dipping a metal spoon halfway into the mixture. When you pull it out, a thick coating should cover the spoon. If you see lumps, you’ve cooked too much. If that happens, remove immediately from the heat and use a wire whisk to break up the lumps.
Grandma Flossy’s sugar cookies would be an awesome accompaniment to the Spanish Cream. I didn’t totally ignore Grandma’s good cooking. These sugar cookies were a staple in our family. Don’t let the title of that post about decorating discourage you though. Like Spanish Cream, you don’t need any toppings to make them taste delicious.
Is there an old family recipe in your file you’ve hesitated to make or forgotten about?
Time is short. Family memories are precious. Why not dig it out and enjoy the memories? Invite family over and enjoy it together.
What old time recipe has become your family favorite? Tell us in the comments section below.
- 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
- 3 cups milk
- 3 eggs separated
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Separateeggs. Beat egg yolks well until blended.
- Sprinklegelatin over one-half cup milk. Scald remaining milk to about 170 degrees. Letcool slightly. Pour over egg yolks. Transfer to the top of a double boiler orheavy saucepan. Add sugar and salt.
- Ifyou are using a double boiler, put water in bottom of double boiler and heattill boiling. Put the top part of the double boiler over the boiling water.Cook the milk mixture until the mixture thickens and coats a metal servingspoon when dipped into the mixture or it reaches 160 degrees.
- Removefrom stove. Add gelatin mixture. Let mixture cool slightly. (To hurry up thisprocess, place pan in an ice water bath for about ten minutes, stirring mixtureoccasionally. Be careful not to let any water splash into the pan.) Addvanilla.
- Beategg whites until stiff peaks form. Carefully fold whites into milk mixture.Pour into your best serving bowl. Chill in refrigerator or overnight. Servewith fruit or whipped cream if preferred, but it tastes wonderful just plaintoo.