1 litre (4 cups)milk1vanilla bean, split and seeds scrapedFinelygrated rind of 1 lemon10egg yolks300 gmcaster sugar50 gmcornflour, sieved50 gmplain flour, sieved, plus extra for dusting2eggs, lightly beaten180 gm (4 cups)fine fresh white breadcrumbsFor shallow-frying:vegetable oilTo serve:good-quality vanilla ice-cream and chestnut honey (see note)
Combine milk, vanilla bean and seeds and lemon rind in a saucepan over medium heat and bring just to the boil. Remove from heat and set aside. Meanwhile, whisk yolks and sugar until pale, add cornflour and flour, whisk to combine. Strain milk mixture through a fine sieve over yolk mixture, whisking continuously, then strain into a clean pan and stir continuously over low heat until very thick (10-15 minutes). Pour into a 20cm x 30cm baking tray lined with baking paper, smooth top and refrigerate until set (1-2 hours).
Turn custard onto a board, then cut into 6.5cm x 10cm rectangles, dip in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, shaking off excess in between. Heat oil 2cm deep until shimmering in a large deep-sided frying pan over medium-high heat, then fry custard in batches, turning once, until golden and warmed through (3-5 minutes; be careful as hot oil may spit). Serve hot with ice-cream, drizzled with honey.
Note Chestnut honey is available from select delicatessens. If unavailable, substitute your favourite honey.
This recipe is from the August 2010 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.