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Desserts: Custards and Pudding


Pudding is a kind of food that can be either a dessert or a savory dish. The word pudding is believed to come from the French boudin, originally from the Latin botellus, meaning "small sausage", referring to encased meats used in Medieval European puddingsCustard is a variety of culinary preparations based on a cooked mixture of milk or cream and egg yolk. Depending on how much egg or thickener is used, custard may vary in consistency from a thin pouring sauce (crème anglaise) to a thick pastry cream (crème pâtissière) used to fill éclairs. Most common custards are used as desserts or dessert sauces and typically include sugar and vanilla. Custard bases may also be used for quiches and other savory foods. Sometimes flour, corn starch, or gelatin is added as in pastry cream or crème pâtissière.
Mixtures of milk and eggs thickened by heat have long been part of French cuisine. Custards baked in pastry (custard tarts) were very popular in the Middle Ages, and are the origin of the English word custard: the French term croustade originally referred to the crust of a tart, and is derived from the Italian word crostata, and ultimately the Latin crustāre.
Examples include Crustardes of flessh and Crustade, in The Forme of Cury. These recipes include solid ingredients such as meat, fish, and fruit bound by the custard. Stirred custards cooked in pots are also found under the names Creme Boylede and Creme boiled.
In modern times, the name custard is sometimes applied to starch-thickened preparations like blancmange and Birds Custard.
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