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Custard Powder in NOVA

m
meimei Nov 16, 2008 12:23 PM

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. m
    MrsWheatie Nov 16, 2008 02:56 PM

    Bird's Custard is one of the biggies,
    http://www.premierfoods.co.uk/premierfoods/our-brands/grocery/birds/en/birds_home.cfm

    I don't know how far you are from this store
    http://www.thebritishpantry.us/

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

    Try Googling for substitutions.

    11 Replies
    1. re: MrsWheatie
      alkapal Nov 17, 2008 04:46 AM

      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
        x
        xdcx Nov 17, 2008 07:11 AM

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

        1. re: alkapal
          m
          meimei Nov 18, 2008 11:21 AM

          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
            alkapal Nov 19, 2008 05:55 AM

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

            1. re: alkapal
              chowser Nov 19, 2008 07:35 AM

              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.

              http://www.recipelink.com/mf/3/11749

              1. re: chowser
                alkapal Nov 19, 2008 07:39 AM

                are the chinese into custards?

                1. re: alkapal
                  chowser Nov 19, 2008 09:49 AM

                  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
                    m
                    meimei Dec 3, 2008 07:52 AM

                    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
                      alkapal Dec 3, 2008 08:29 AM

                      great, thanks meimei! i look forward to it.

          2. re: MrsWheatie
            x
            xdcx Nov 17, 2008 07:10 AM

            wegmans carries birds.

            1. re: MrsWheatie
              monkeyrotica Nov 18, 2008 02:43 AM

              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. p
              pgwiz1 Nov 17, 2008 01:09 PM

              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. chowser Nov 17, 2008 02:35 PM

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

                1. d
                  DCDeb Nov 17, 2008 08:17 PM

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

                  1. MsDiPesto Dec 4, 2008 06:55 PM

                    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
                      alkapal Dec 5, 2008 03:28 AM

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

                      1. re: alkapal
                        cheesepowder Jan 3, 2009 04:52 AM

                        yes, the British store moved next to Boulevard Woodgrill.

                        1. re: cheesepowder
                          alkapal Jan 3, 2009 05:33 AM

                          alrighty then! thanks! happy new year!

                    2. t
                      travellerva Dec 21, 2008 11:05 AM

                      I just found some Bird's Custard Powder today at Giant Foods on Lee Highway in Arlington. It is in the International Foods section.

                      This Giant is in Lyon Village Shopping Center at the intersection of Lee Highway and Spout Run.

                      Now my Americn kids will be happy to know they're going to get an English trifle for dessert on Thursday!

                      Incidentally, if you can't get the powder mix, you can always make custard from cornflour, eggs, sugar, milk and vanilla. There are recipes online. The powder is just that much easier.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: travellerva
                        alkapal Jan 1, 2009 04:05 AM

                        wow, that's "my" giant, too! will check it out. i feel like making a trifle!

                        happy new year!

                      2. t
                        tinymango Jan 2, 2009 08:46 PM

                        thai stores carry custard mixes frquently, as well, that culture is very into "custahd"

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