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Nov 16, 2008 12:23 PM

Custard Powder in NOVA

I have a new sweet bread recipe that calls for custard powder as part of the filling. Anyone know where I can find some? I've called Wegman's in Sterling and Fran's, neither has it nor heard of it.
I did some research and learned that its a common English baking item, is there a store that sepcialized in British ingredients here in NOVA?
I also read that it can be sub. with cornstarch? But I'm curious on how well that will work since its suppose to be a sweet filling?

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  1. Bird's Custard is one of the biggies,

    I don't know how far you are from this store

    I seem to remember seeing it at Rodmans. A long shot might be World Market.

    Try Googling for substitutions.

    11 Replies
    1. re: MrsWheatie

      Bird’s uses cornflour mixed with milk to form its thick custardy sauce. -- according to that site. so that is probably cornstarch. maybe mixed with dried milk? or is the custard powder just the cornstarch alone, anyone?

      meimei, if the bread is supposed to be sweet, doesn't it have sugar in the recipe? is your recipe online so we can have a look?

      (you know what i first thought of was using a dry jello vanilla pudding mix, which is *primarily* just sugar and "modified food starch". don't kill me....)

      1. re: alkapal

        it's basically like a thick vanilla pudding mix, but a lot better than your standard jello pudding mix.

        1. re: alkapal

          Sorry, the recipe is in a book that I brought back from Asia. I'll type it up and post it once I actually able to make it. :)

          1. re: meimei

            thanks, it does sound interesting --a sweet bread with a filling. tell us the recipe if it is good! ;-)

            1. re: alkapal

              It sounds like a custard bun that you get in chinese bakeries or dim sum. It's often topped w/ a crusty sugar and called pineapple buns, though there are no pineapples in them.


                1. re: alkapal

                  Hmmm, I don't know the history. Eggs weren't that common, nor was dairy (or baking for that matter) so I would guess it's a newer addition. It would be worth asking the rest of the CHs on general chowhounding when it became part of the cuisine. You can get custard buns and custard tarts at dimsum.

                  1. re: alkapal

                    Taiwanese bakery are very much similar to Japanese bakery, which is influced by the European. Hong Kong obviously take many of the falvor from its British empire days. So Bake goods from these placed are going to have its unique take on the "western" taste. That be say, this bread doesn't have the soft custard filling as pineapple bread (Japanese call it Melon bread, and has a sweet red bean filling). The filling in this actually gets bake in as part of the bread. So its seen and tasted, but doesn't "stand out" like a filling filling. I'll post the recipe under "Greentea Milk Bread" in the home cook section later tonight. Please look for it if you are interested.

                    1. re: meimei

                      great, thanks meimei! i look forward to it.

            1. re: MrsWheatie

              I saw it at World Market about two weeks ago. I recall seeing it at Whole Foods a while ago, but they may no longer carry it.

            2. Try going to any Indian grocery store. They always have it. And the custard powder is more than just cornstarch...because the way you make custard using it, is just add milk, and it becomes this thick, vanilla-y goodness (for the lack of a better word). Beats sitting in front of a stove trying to make custard from scratch. I've used it a bunch when making a triffle, etc.

              1. If you can go to a miliary commissary, Fort Belvoir carries it.

                1. I have been able to buy Bird's dessert mix at either Giant or Safeway--try one of their bigger stores.

                  1. If the other suggestions don't pan out for you, there's a store with British items on Wilson Blvd in Arlington.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: MsDiPesto

                      the one next to hard times was razed. is it relocated elsewhere?

                      1. re: alkapal

                        yes, the British store moved next to Boulevard Woodgrill.

                        1. re: cheesepowder

                          alrighty then! thanks! happy new year!