People with hens have to be creative to use all the eggs that their hens produce in the spring. This late winter and spring, I actually had an excess of eggs. And that was when only three hens were laying. While I love giving eggs to people who really appreciate the goodness of fresh eggs, I usually end up giving away the best of the best. Ones that are jumbo and don’t have blemishes. I end up with seconds. Doesn’t make sense. With only three hens, I’ll make an effort to use the eggs myself.
We use our eggs in all kinds of ways. We like egg salad sandwiches, deviled eggs, huevos rancheros, quiche, omelets, poached eggs, and eggs Florentine. I’m going to make a soufflé as soon as I get up the nerve.
Since we needed some comfort food after loosing Tulip, I went back to an old egg recipe for a dessert that turned out to be a hit at a recent potluck: baked custard. People my age have fond memories of Mom (the depression era kind) serving egg custard for dessert. Smooth, creamy, rich, topped with a mound of whipped cream, takes you back to a simpler time, before Ben and Jerry’s and chocolate mousse. This easy-to-make recipe is the basic kind. I didn’t get it off the internet (those were all altered with flavors and additions). This was out my old Better Homes and Garden “New Cookbook”. You remember, the one with the red plaid cover. Anyway, I tripled the recipe for the potluck but the one below is fine for 4 people. Double for 6-8 servings, and enjoy. Beware, some people may want seconds.
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Ground nutmeg (optional)
In a medium bowl, lightly beat eggs. Stir in milk, vanilla, and salt. Place one-1 quart casserole or six 6-ounce custard cups in a 13x9x2 inch baking pan on an oven rack. Pour custard mixture among the custard cups. Sprinkle with nutmeg.
Pour boiling water into the pan around the casserole or custard cups to a depth of 1 inch. Bake at 325º until firm and a knife, inserted near center comes out clean. Serve warm or chilled.
To unmold chilled individual custard, first loosen edges with a spatula or knife; slip point of knife down sides to let air in. Invert onto a serving plate. Top with whipped cream if you wish.