Lesson 6 of10
In Progress

Creme Anglaise

chefnubbs May 31, 2021


Creme Anglaise

A velvety, rich vanilla sauce. Also a perfect base for ice cream, pastry filling, custard, cake layer and more.
Total Time 22 mins
Course Dessert


  • Stainless Steal Bowl
  • Double Boiler
  • Whisk
  • Scale & Measuring Accessories
  • Thermomater
  • Ice bath (1 lg container with ice & some water, a 2nd stainless steal metal container fit comfortably in the ice). An ice bath is VERY IMPORTANT
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Kitchen Towl, slightly damp


  • 8 oz Yolks, egg fresher the better, don't be cheap. this is Creme Anglaise after all.
  • 8 oz Sugar
  • 2 pounds Milk the more expensive the better. it's sad but true. also, make with milk the first few times but eventually play with heavy cream etc.
  • 1 ea Vanilla Bean again, this is Creme Anglaise ... spend the extra if you can.
  • 0.5 oz Vanilla Extract ONLY IF you can't get a bean.


  • EQUIPMENT NOTE: This sauce deserves your respect in its preparation equal to your expectations of its performance in your mouth. With no experience, you will curdle the eggs. The sauce is broken and so are any hopes of any positive experience. Plus your pot now has a skin scorched onto its surface nearly impossible to scrub off.
    Creme Anglaise is kinda magical though in that even it's most rushed, cheap, unflattering success is still delicious. For it to exist at all, it demands you give it some elegance in preparation. In this way, it is much like risotto or sushi.
    If you want things to go well on your first date with this sauce, get all of the equipment I suggest. This includes a thermometer which can attach to the side of the pot giving you accurate reading hands free.
    But if you don't mind getting slapped in the face, cold water thrown in your lap, having the door slammed on you time after time after time then by all means go ahead and use just a pot, bowl and whisk until you figure it out. But if that's your thing, I wish you'd get this recipe elsewhere. Pervert.
  • MISE EN PLACE! Always important but especially so with Creme Anglaise. Set everything up before hand.
    DAMP TOWL NOTE: sorta bunch the towl up on itself. the purpose is to keep the stainless steal bowl steady and still. at one point you will be VERY SLOWLY pouring hot milk into the bowl (which will have eggs and sugar in it) while whisking very quickly. If the bowl is not steady, you will burn yourself making a sticky mess.
    FIXED THERMOMETER NOTE: Creme Anglaise must reach an even 185 degrees but it CAN NOT reach 191 degrees!!! At 185 you must pour it into the ice bath bowl. Having a thermometer fixed to the side of the bowl helps. If this is not an option, make sure you envision before hand the process of whisking / temping then very quickly shifting to pouring. It seems very simple but it's weirdly easy to burn yourself while making a sticky mess.
    REMOVE VANILLA AHEAD OF TIME: If you don't know how to get the seeds out of the bean, please watch a 30 second video on youtube. Put the seeds directly into milk before you even turn on the double boiler. If you like sweet sugar, reserve the bean skins in several cups of sugar for 1 month. Shake from time to time ... that sugar is bangin'!
  • First, pour the milk & vanilla into the double boiler and bring up to scalding hot (that is, just below simmering...don't let it simmer).
    IF NOT USING A DOUBLE BOILER BE CAREFUL NOT TO ...hmm... know what? I'm just going to let you learn from experience. It is nothing that can cause injury or harm but I've warned you that making Creme Anglaise deserves respect so either, buy the right tools or be very careful.
  • Whilst the milk warmeth, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar in your stainless steal bowl. Whip them until thick but light, uniform and kinda shiny.
    The whisk will hit the bowl. But try to keep it to a minimum. The chemistry of the metal and the sugar and yolk is such that this can impart a very, very faint metallic taste and even color.
    When ready steady the bowl on the damp towel pile we talked about.
  • Get a good grip on your scalding milk pot. With the wooden spoon, begin stirring your yolk/sugar mixture.
    Slowly (seriously, like a few drops at a time at first) but consistently begin to drizzle the milk into the yolk/sugar while stirring. Carefully increase the volume at which you pour. Continue to pour incorporating as such until about half the milk has been incorporated.
    The goal is to bring the heat of the yolk/sugar mixture up without cooking the yolk or sugar. Its hard because if you go too slow, the mixture stays too cool; too fast and you've made unedible scrambled eggs.
    Put the pot back on the boiler. Begin stirring the milk as you very slowly begin to drizzle the warmed mixture into the milk in the double boiler.
  • Once everything has been poured out, use the rubber spatula to scrape out the rest. Because the sticky gooey stuff is the payload.
    Stir vigorously for about 10 seconds with the wooden spoon. The point is to make sure all the sugar and yolk is really incorporated into the milk.
  • Don't stir too much but do keep it moving. Watch carefully as the temp approaches 185.
  • Protip, you can pull it at 187 but when starting out, once it hits 185 begin to readjust yourself. Carefully pour the sauce from the double boiler into the ice bath. If you can, be stirring as you do this. If you need both hands to pour that's cool, don't worry though about every drop. Once most of it is poured, put the bowl back on the double boiler, turn off the heat.
    Stir the sauce in the ice bath for several seconds.
    Grap your rubber spatula and the bowl with rest of the Anglaise, scrape and pour for every drop.
  • Stir for at least 30 seconds. Allow to cool in bowl until all the ice is melted.
Keyword Culinary, Custard, Desserts, Ice Cream