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Crema Pasticcera - Italian Pastry Cream Recipe

This is the basic Italian pastry cream used for Zuppa Englese or St. Joseph Day pastries.

Crema Pasticcera
Italian Pastry Cream Recipe



  1. Place sugar, egg yolks, and flour in a sauce pan and mix together until the sugar is dissolved. (This is easier when the eggs are room temperature.)
  2. In a separate sauce pan, scald the milk (it will have formed a skin on top, but isn't yet boiling).
  3. Place the pot with the egg-sugar mixture over a medium heat.
  4. Very slowly pour milk over egg yolk mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk.
  5. Cooking until the mixture just reaches the boiling point.
  6. Add the vanilla and lemon zest.
  7. Lower the heat and continue cooking for about 4 minutes, stirring constantly.
  8. The crema should be thick and similar to pudding.
  9. Remove pan from heat.
  10. Place a piece of wax paper on the surface of the crema to prevent a skin from forming.
  11. Allow it to cool to room temperature. This will take at least 3-4 hours.

*--Save the egg whites to make meringues or soufflés. I put a small, resealable bag in a cup and add the whites during the separation process. Use a permanent marker to indicate how many egg whites are in the bag. Freeze the whites for up to one year.

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Content copyright © 2013 by Paula Laurita. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Paula Laurita. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Cinzia Aversa for details.

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