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Apr 2, 2011 02:53 PM

Mmmm ... Custard Apples!

Unfortunately, not many custard apple recipes out there, at least not here on chowhound that I've seen.
I thought I would use the present thread to add to those that are linked to in

When you are searching for custard apple recipes, don't forget to check variations on their name -- custard apples, cherimoyas, chirimoyas.

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  1. Custard Apple Cream Cheese Delight Pie

    8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
    2 tsp unflavored gelatin
    1/4 cup water
    14 oz/400g (about 1 cup) of custard apple pulp*
    14 oz sweetened condensed milk
    2 tsp Madagascar Bourbon vanilla
    2 premade pie shells (eg graham cracker or shortbread piecrusts)

    Beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium until lightly fluffy, about 30 seconds.

    Stir gelatin into water in small microwave-safe bowl or cup, then microwave on high to warm the water without boiling (10 - 20 seconds), so that the gelatin completely dissolves and the liquid clears.
    Set aside to cool slightly for a few minutes.

    Blend the custard apple pulp and cream cheese with mixer on medium setting, 1 - 2 minutes.

    Combine the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, gelatin mixture, and custard apple/cream cheese mixture. Mix until well blended, about 1½ - 2 minutes.

    Divide the mixture between the two pie shells.
    Refrigerate 4 hours or until set.

    Serves 16 slices

    *I used Belmont-brand frozen chirimoya (custard apple) pulp, thawed, because that was what was available. If you’re lucky enough to have fresh custard apples on hand, you can extract an equivalent amount of fresh pulp and process it lightly in a blender (or pulse process it briefly in a food processor) to break up the pulp without grinding up the seeds. Then strain to remove the seeds.

    1. Custard Apple Chiffon Pie

      14 oz/400g (about 1 cup) of custard apple pulp
      4 eggs’ whites, at room temperature
      1 tsp unflavored gelatin
      1 T water
      1½ cup/400ml heavy cream, chilled
      1/4 cup/50g sugar
      2 tsp Madagascar Bourbon vanilla

      Beat the egg whites until they have nearly formed stiff peaks.

      Stir the gelatin into the water in a microwave-safe small bowl or cup.
      Microwave on high until water is warm but not boiling and the gelatin has dissolved (about 10 - 15 seconds).
      Allow the gelatin solution to cool for a few minutes.

      If using previously-frozen custard apple pulp, beat the custard apple pulp with an electric mixer on slow to medium setting for about 30 seconds.

      Pour 1 T of the heavy cream into gelatin solution and stir well. The gelatin should still be dissolved; heat the gelatin mixture in the microwave for a few seconds if the gelatin begins to solidify, then stir well again and allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes.

      Whip together the remaining heavy cream and the sugar until stiff peaks form.

      Drizzle the vanilla and the gelatin mixture over the custard apple pulp.

      Gently fold together the egg whites, custard apple pulp, and whipped cream until all have been well-incorporated into the mixture.

      Divide the mixture between the two pie shells.
      Refrigerate for 4+ hours or until set.
      (As another option, consider putting the pies in the freezer for 30 - 60 minutes before serving, for ice cream pies.)

      Serves 16 slices

      Comment: These pies are very, very light (as you would expect from the egg whites and whipped cream). They really shouldn’t sit in the refrigerator too long: they are delicious on the day prepared, but the mousse begins to lose its volume, and the piecrusts can become a little soggy, after 24 hours.

      I haven’t played around with the recipe at all yet -- it may be possible to extend the holding time a day or so by using something like Dr Oetker’s WhipIt, or by using much more gelatin (at the cost of losing some of the airiness of the mousse). In fact, probably next time around I will increase the gelatin a little because with only 1 tsp of gelatin, cutting through the mousse with a knife was a little challenging.

      Because this recipe calls for raw egg whites, individuals who are pregnant, who are very old or very young, or who have compromised immune function should probably only indulge if allowed by their doctor. The USDA advises substituting pasteurized dried egg whites in recipes calling for raw eggs whites.

      1. If cooks more experienced than I can see some obvious ways to simplify or otherwise improve these recipes, please don't hesitate to speak up!

        1. Custard Apple Cake with Custard Apple Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

          (Yes, I am cheating by doctoring up a pre-packaged cake mix. Feel free to make yours from scratch. And I love vanilla, so I tend to use more than what others use in their recipes. You may prefer using only 1/2 or less than what's called for in the recipe.)


          1 package Duncan Hines French Vanilla Moist Deluxe cake mix
          3 eggs
          1 cup water
          1/3 cup vegetable oil
          14 oz custard apple pulp

          Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8-inch cake pans.
          Combine cake mix, vegetable oil, custard apple pulp, and 1/2 cup of the water. Using an electric mixer, mix at low speed for about 30 seconds, then at medium for 2 minutes. Add additional water as necessary to achieve a consistency that will allow the batter to flow easily when poured into the pans without being runny (the amount of water necessary will vary depending on the consistency of the custard apple pulp you are using).

          Bake at 350 degrees until tops are just lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean (approximately 30 minutes).

          Allow cakes to cool in pans over wire racks to room temperature.
          It may be easier to apply the frosting if the cakes are further cooled in the refrigerator or freezer for a few minutes before frosting.

          Custard Apple Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

          1 cup custard apple pulp
          1 pound cream cheese (ie, two 8-oz bricks)
          4 oz unsalted butter (ie, one half-stick)
          3 - 4 cups confectioner's sugar
          1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
          1 tablespoon vanilla extract

          All ingredients should be at room temperature.
          Cream the butter and cream cheese.
          Add the custard apple pulp and vanilla extract, and continue to mix the ingredients until well-combined. Sprinkle the xanthan gum over the confectioner’s sugar, then mix these well. Gradually blend the confectioner's sugar/xanthan gum mixture into the custard apple/cream cheese/butter mixture in batches until reaching the desired consistency (the total quantity of sugar required will vary depending on the consistency of the custard apple pulp you are using).

          The xanthan gum isn't absolutely necessary, but it does help hold the frosting together at room temperature.

          For best results, it may help to refrigerate the frosting for several minutes prior to applying to the cake.

          1 Reply
          1. re: racer x

            The frosting is also good on a plain vanilla-flavored cake.
            (And the recipe yields more than enough for a two-layer 8-inch cake -- you'll probably have enough to frost some cupcakes as well, or if you are baking from scratch instead of using a pre-packaged mix, maybe even go for three layers.)

            I have a hunch that the custard apple flavor would also go well with a bit of passionfruit (either custard apple-passionfruit frosting on plain vanilla cake, or custard apple cake with passionfruit frosting, but I haven't had a chance to try those combinations yet).

          2. Passionfruit-Custard Apple Mousse Pie

            Very light, easy to make, and delicious!
            Perfect for warm spring or summer nights.

            2 cups heavy whipping cream
            14 oz sweetened-condensed milk
            1/2 cup passionfruit pulp -- I buy frozen* pulp and thaw it for the recipe
            1/2 cup custard-apple (cherimoya, chirimoya) pulp -- I buy frozen* pulp and thaw it for the recipe
            3 T sugar** (I use a 1/2 Splenda-1/2 sugar blend), adjust quantity to taste
            1 T vanilla extract
            1 packet (about 1 T) unflavored gelatin
            1/4 cup water

            2 eight-inch ready-made pie crusts

            Chill the whipping cream.
            Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a bowl and allow to soak for one minute. Then microwave for about 30 seconds, until the gelatin has completely dissolved (do not allow to boil). (If you do not have a microwave, this step can be performed by gently heating the gelatin granules in water over low heat and stirring constantly, about 3 minutes).

            Combine the sweetened-condensed milk, passionfruit juice, custard-apple pulp, sugar**, vanilla, and gelatin solution in a mixing bowl. Mix on medium speed until well-combined, about one minute. Taste and add more sugar if needed.

            Whip the cream to stiff peaks.

            Fold 1/4 or 1/3 of the fruit mixture into the whipped cream, and gently mix until well-incorporated. Continue working in parts until all of the fruit mixture has been folded into the whipped cream.

            Pour the mousse into the pie shells. Refrigerate, and allow to chill at least 4 hours. (It will be even better the next day.) These pies can also be made ahead of time and frozen, then thawed when ready to use.

            * if you have access to fresh fruit, you can prepare fresh-fruit pulp but it's a bit more work (instructions are available on the internet)
            ** alternatively, the sugar can be added to the cream right before whipping (however, if it is the first time you are preparing this dish, it will be easier to see whether you need to adjust the sweetness if you add the sugar to the fruit blend rather than to the cream)

            The pies can be dressed up with sprigs of fresh mint and/or berries, or with a drizzle of berry (eg raspberry) sauce on top; but I prefer the pies just as they are!