Catalan custard

‘Catalan custard’ is a classic of Spanish cuisine: it's so good that from its region of origin, Catalonia, the region of Spain where Barcelona is located, it has been ‘exported’ practically all over the world. Very quick and easy to prepare, it is enjoyed by all lovers of good food, young or old. Catalan custard is ideal for impressing your guests, as a dessert for a special dinner or lunch party, and for other celebratory occasions. It is made in individual portions that can be flavoured by other ingredients, such as fruit, sweet sauces, mint leaves etc. When you taste Catalana custard you may be surprised by its spicy flavour, due to the cinnamon that goes perfectly with the classic crispness of the caramelized sugar crust. To finish this crust perfectly, you should use a chef’s flame; alternatively, you can caramelize the surface using a very hot grill. And now let’s make this fantastic dessert together!


  • sugar 120 grams
  • cornflour 30 grams
  • milk 500 millilitres
  • lemon 1 gram Peel
  • vanilla extract 1 gram Pod
  • cinnamon
  • egg yolks 4 egg yolks
30 minutes Total time
20 minutes Active time
Serves 2 persons
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Dissolve the cornflour in a little milk. Pour the remaining milk into a saucepan and add half the sugar. Season the milk with a little ground cinnamon. Add the vanilla seeds from a vanilla pod, removing them with a knife. Grate the zest of one lemon into the milk and bring it to the boil. Meanwhile, add the sugar to 4 egg yolks and beat well with a whisk. Add the dissolved cornflour to the mixture. Strain the flavoured milk and, whilst still hot, also pour it into the sugary egg mixture. Then return it to the heat in a saucepan and bring to a boil until you get a thick liquid. Pour the liquid into suitable individual bowls and let them cool in the fridge. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Caramelize the sugar with a chef’s flame until a crust of caramelized sugar.

Catalan custard is prepared in individual servings: consider using ramekins which are at least 4-5cm in diameter. You can decorate them with fruit, such as strawberries or blueberries; or with mouth-watering sauces, such as chocolate or caramel sauce; or with chocolate chips or nuts.
Catalan custard is a famous Spanish dessert, traditionally from Catalonia, which is prepared for the feast of St. Joseph. It is inspired by crème brûlée, a classic French dessert. If your Catalan custard is not eaten straightaway it can be kept for a maximum of one day.

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