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January 26, 2021

Custard desserts and being young and carefree again!

Posted on June 25, 2014 by in desserts, rsg

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custard desserts

Custard desserts are hug-in-a-bowl-desserts and yes, even just plain old custard gives me that warm fuzzy feeling, especially on a cold winters day!

Custard desserts are nothing new to us, there are so many of them…. think trifle, custard slices, pavlova with custard and those are just the simple ones. Custard also forms the base of ice-creams, mousse, creme bruleé and yes, even the South African Classic  Milktart is basically a custard in a pastry case! Custard desserts luckily is not where it stops, custard forms the base of many savory dishes too! Quiches and Souffles  are all custard based dishes.

My college years jumps to mind if I think about custard desserts. Aaaah, those carefree years when you literally live from one meal to the next and one jollification to the next!  I cannot figure out if the dessert was THAT good or whether it was the fact that we usually got it on Fridays, that made it so memorable. I have a suspicion the association with “it’s-the-weekend-baby”, engraved this dessert in my memory. Tannie Theunisen was the cook and she had to endure what most varsity hostel cooks has to endure…… never-ending chirping and complaining and very little praise. Easy-going as I am, I loved the food. She most probably had to make due with mass produced sauces and thickeners  to stretch the meat, chicken or rice dishes she concocted, but I was grateful! Maybe my mom’s sermons about never-disappointing-your-host paid off and I gladly ate what was served. Two particular dishes always brought a smile to my face…… sweet and sour liver and Tannie Theunisen’s custard dessert. On the liver days, I had plenty, because not many students loved it and on the custard dessert days, I had to think of clever ways to get hold of some. I was the senior and at the head of the table so I had to dish out which meant I only got my dessert last….. yikes, some days I had to miss out… not a good feeling!

Custard Desserts

The dessert was probably made  with the cheapest custard powder, but to me it was  layers of thick, luscious custard, cornflakes, apricot jam and a baked meringue topping.

This week I was thinking of my varsity years and being young and carefree again and also about Tannie Theunisen’s custard dessert. Imagine having a whole dessert to myself, not having to dish out and miss out….. heaven! Of course time waits for no-one and so I had to re-invent the dessert……. not much, just a little! Make it a little grown-up, put it in a mould I suppose like we all feel some days ….. stuck in a mould!

Custard Desserts

Tannie Theunisen’s Custard dessert – reinvented

serves 8


1,5 liter very thick custard – use custard powder or make your own

3 cups cornflakes

80 g butter

45 ml golden syrup

2 egg whites

80 g castor sugar

store-bought toffee sauce


Line a bread tin with cling wrap. Place the cornflakes in a food processor and blitz to coarse crumb stage. Melt the butter and golden syrup together and add to the cornflake crumbs, mix and keep one side. Make your custard according to the packet instructions and allow it to cool slightly. Spoon half of the custard in the lined loaf tin and top with half of the cornflake crumbs. Top with the other half of the custard. Close the overlapping clingfilm at the top and allow the custard to set. When you are ready to serve, place the egg whites in your mixing bowl and whisk until it forms stiff peaks. Add the castor sugar, a little at a time while whisking until you have a shiny meringue. Scoop into a piping bag and pipe little meringues on the custard dessert. Use a torch to brown the meringue or place under a very hot grill for literally seconds. Serve with toffee syrup and enjoy!

custard desserts

Tomorrow  morning  just after the 9 o’clock news, we will take custard to a new level. Tune in let’s remember being young and carefree again. I will also in weeks to come take you into the kitchens of other bloggers, chefs and interesting South Africans this year. So buckle up, it is going to be an awesome ride. Tune in 100-104FM or listen online here!

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3 Responses to “Custard desserts and being young and carefree again!”

  1. Jeff @ 27 June 2014 at 2:49 am #

    Custard desserts are my favorite. They’re my go to feel-good desserts. Just looking at the photo of this Tannie Theunisen’s custard dessert makes my mouth go watery.

  2. pauli berg 28 June 2014 at 4:35 pm #

    fabulous — ilove love love any kind of custart bite .

  3. Elliot Davey 8 July 2014 at 3:18 pm #

    I literally melted when I saw this dessert! Yup, I’m going to make this – awesome recipe.

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