Making Custard For Dessert? Avoid These 6 Common Mistakes
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Custard has a special place in the world of desserts. It works super fine when served like a pudding, and the magic it creates if mixed with the baked goods is simply unmatchable. If you have a sweet tooth, you must have thought of perfecting this creamy and velvety delight at least once in your life. 

But everyone knows mastering the art of custard is not so easy. With so many details like maintaining the perfect balance between eggs and milk, a little too much heat, or maybe a bit less, can be overwhelming. But, in this article, you’ll get a hack for every potential mishap while making custard from stubborn lumps to saddened curdling. Reverse all of them and enjoy a bowl filled with flawlessly smooth custard.


One of the most common and frustrating problems that often happens while making custard is curdling. It usually occurs if the eggs you use in the custard mixture are done faster than the other ingredients and start to get separated, giving the custard a lumpy texture.

To ensure that your custard doesn’t curdle, the first step is to whisk the eggs evenly in the rest of the custard mixture and don’t let it rest till you get an even consistency. The next thing to keep in mind is to always cook the custard on low to medium heat and stir constantly. Even after taking the precautions, if and when you notice curdling, remove your pan from the heat, place it in a bowl of icy cool water, and let it cool down. Finally, you can strain the custard to get rid of any lumps.

Thin or Watery Custard

Another issue that can dissatisfy the custard's taste is when its creamy texture is too watery. If you find out that your custard is too thin, there are some steps to thicken it to get the perfect consistency. The easiest way is to cook it on low flame for some more time to get rid of the extra water. Another option to set the custard is to mix a small amount of cornstarch with cold milk or water to create a slurry and then gradually add it to the custard while stirring. After constant stirring, letting the custard cook for a few minutes will help it attain your desired consistency.

Overcooked Custard

Usually, when a dish is overcooked, there’s hardly any scope to make things right. But, you get this advantage with custard. If you think your custard has a grainy texture or an unpleasant smell or taste of egg, it might be a sign of overcooked custard.

The most important way to prevent the custard from overcooking is to remove it from the flame as soon as you get the desired consistency. You should also note that when you put down the custard to let it cool down to set, it will automatically thicken. So, it’s better not to risk overcooking and attempting to get a thicker consistency. Now, even if you land in a situation of overcooked custard, you can fasten the cooling process by shifting the pan to a bowl of ice water while whisking it continuously.

Scorched Bottom

If you leave custard on the heat unattended, it can easily scorch and make the taste on the bitter side. Remember to keep stirring the custard while the pan is on the flames to prevent a scorched bottom. In case you notice that the custard is sticking to the bottom of the pan, transfer the contents into a new pan and then continue to cook till you get a creamy texture. Once the custard is done, let it cool, and you’re ready to take a spoonful and enjoy the flavours swirling in your mouth.

Air Bubbles

It has been noted that the formation of air bubbles in custard is a common sight. The air bubbles can get trapped while cooking or even during the setting process, which gives the custard an uneven texture and even lumps.

There are some easy steps to avoid the formation of air bubbles. First, keep in mind to always gently stir the mixture. Secondly, once the custard starts to thicken, you should let it rest and avoid any vigorous whisking. And even if air bubbles form, you can tap the bottom of the pan to release the air or use a spoon to remove them from the custard’s surface.

Formation Of Skin

Whenever you leave the custard to cool down without covering the container, you might see a skin-like layer forming on the surface, compromising the overall texture. The best way to avoid the formation of skin is to either cover the container in which the custard is getting set with a lid or with plastic wrap. If skin still forms, wipe it off with a damp cloth before eating or serving for the creamiest custard and a smooth texture.