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This Shortcut Is A Brilliant Way To Elevate Everyday Desserts

Making crème anglaise by melting ice cream.

Some of my favorite desserts at restaurants over the years have featured crème anglaise, a sweet, custard-like pouring sauce made with egg yolks, sugar, and milk. I’ve tried replicating it at home on multiple occasions, but without much success — egg-based desserts have never been my forte!

So imagine how pleased I was to learn that melted vanilla ice cream makes a fine substitute for crème anglaise! In Ina Garten’s book “Cook Like a Pro: Recipes and Tips for Home Cooks,” she explains that crème anglaise and vanilla ice cream share a base of milk, eggs, sugar, and vanilla.

Melted ice cream may not have the same super-silky texture as scratch-made crème anglaise, but the flavor is spot on, making this a clever and useful dessert shortcut!

How To Use Ice Cream To Make Crème Anglaise

To “make” this version of crème anglaise, take a pint of a good-quality vanilla ice cream (Häagen-Dazs works well) out of your freezer and let it melt at room temperature for an hour or two. Once it’s melted, you can use it to dress up any dessert! (If you’re in a hurry, you can melt it over low heat on your stovetop, but I wouldn’t recommend using more heat than that.)

Your DIY pouring custard will be gluten-free as long as the ice cream is, and you could even make a plant-based vegan version using a dairy-free vanilla ice cream.

6 Delicious Ways To Use Crème Anglaise

  1. Pour it over a slice of cake, bread pudding, waffles, or pie.
  2. Use it as the filling for a poke cake.
  3. Pour it over fresh or frozen berries.
  4. Use it as a dipping sauce for churros and doughnuts.
  5. Layer it with cake, fruit, and whipped cream to make a trifle.
  6. Dip slices of bread into DIY crème anglaise to make decadent French toast that’s deliciously caramelized on the outside and soft and custardy on the inside.

Have you ever tried making crème anglaise at home?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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