2 min read

Crème Norvégienne and Chiffon Bread

When out of ingredients, improvise.

I’m not entirely sure what spurred me to make variations of Crème Anglaise and Chiffon Cake, but here we are. I should emphasize variations: Being out of ingredients, I decided to improvise with what I had—economical and an excuse to avoid food waste. The results were no less delectable.

Custard and cake

For the custard, I swapped out milk with cream, and vanilla sticks with vanilla extract. The result was a more decadent crème, and just so I don’t insult the Brits—Charles has enough on his plate—I renamed the custard Crème Norvégienne.

My take on the Chiffon Cake is more of a bread-like variant, and I renamed it accordingly: Chiffon Bread. It’s dryer than its more famous cousin and therefore pairs well with the crème.

The Recipe

Crème Norvégienne

  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups cream
  • Pinch of salt
  • 5 egg yolks
  • ¼ cups sugar
  1. Whisk egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Combine vanilla, cream, and salt in a medium pan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
  3. Whisk 1 cup of cream mixture into egg yolks to temper.
  4. Slowly pour the egg yolk mixture into the simmering cream mixture. Continue to cook, constantly whisking, until the mixture thickens and reaches about 175 degrees. About 6 minutes.
  5. Pour mixture into a bowl and refrigerate. Serve when cooled.

Chiffon Bread

  • 1 ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 5 eggs separated
  • ¾ cup water
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle and heat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Whisk sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk in whole eggs, egg yolks, water, oil, and vanilla until the batter is smooth.
  3. Whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold whites into batter.
  4. Pour batter into a springform pan. Smooth the top with a spatula and very gently tap the pan on the counter to release air bubbles.
  5. Bake for about an hour—until a skewer comes out clean from the center of the bread.
  6. Let cool for right about 2 hours.

Serve together, serve separately; it doesn’t matter—both are awesome.

Corrections (and omissions)

An observant reader noticed an egregious error in the Digest’s “Lemon Curd” post:

Yogurt spelled without an “h,” I never thought I’d see it. It’s like you typed that newsletter with your pinky down.

We apologize for not living up to our highfalutin reputation and promise we will properly stylize yoghurt in the future.