California Custard

We are celebrating our move by spending 6 days in our new home followed by a week long trip to California. 😉 Ok, not really celebrating but we are indeed in California. The cookbook I tucked in my suitcase, the Pocket Cook Book, by Elizabeth Woody 1942, has some California recipes. Ok, it has recipes that use the word California in them. I thought that would be a good way to get ready for the Blogher Conference.

Like the California BBQ recipe that was much reviled by my children, these recipes are not obviously Californian. At least not to me…ok…maybe it is the almonds, prunes, and the oranges in this case. You have to love a recipe that thinks prunes are a good garnish! (For the record, I like prunes but pretty they usually are not.)

California Custard

Serves 4

1/4 cup sugar
2 tbs. cornstarch
few grains salt
1 egg
1 cup water
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 oranges
8 pitted cooked prunes
shredded coconut

Mix sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Beat egg; add with water and milk. Cook over hot water, stirring constantly, until thick. Cool. Add almond extract. Pour into serving dish. Separate oranges into membrane-free sections; use as garnish with prunes and coconut.


  1. YAY for California! It’s gotta be better than Texas. Holy heck it’s hot.

    But nuthin’ a little chilled custard can’t fix…with peaches…and a cookie type crust…Mmmm.

  2. hmmm that sounds good Kiesha.

    Cold here. 🙁

  3. I recently experimented with a bit of retro food myself. Found a pamphlet called “Cooling Dishes for Hot Weather,” published 1958, in a drawer in an antique shop. The salmon-cucumber salad was quite good, though I omitted the capers. And there is just something about 1950s-era food photography that is unmistakable. Everything is so stiff, so crowded, so colorful, and so surreal looking — where were the pictures taken? The light looks neither like sunlight nor like any artificial light from any studio … here on earth.

  4. Have fun at Blogher – I’m so jealous!
    I love a good custard and I love retro cookbooks.

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