A lovely tart rhubarb compote gives a delicious contrast to the creamy richness of this simple classic.

Serves 4




400g rhubarb

100g caster sugar

1 tbsp water

400 ml double cream

4 egg yolks

4 generous tbsp demerara sugar

  1. Preheat the oven to 150˚C.
  2. Cut the rhubarb into 2 cm pieces.  Put them in a saucepan, add 50g of the sugar and the table spoon of water. Mix thoroughly.  Turn the heat onto medium and stir for 4-5 minutes.  Turn down the heat, cover and simmer gently until tender.  Check the sweetness.  Dissolve a little extra sugar in the juices if necessary.
  3. Divide the rhubarb between 4 x 200ml flameproof ramekin dishes.
  4. Heat the cream gently, until almost boiling then remove from the heat.
  5. While the cream is heating beat the egg yolks with the remaining 50g of caster sugar.  Pour the hot cream over the sugar and egg yolks and mix well.
  6. Divide the cream mixture between the ramekins.  Place the ramekins in a roasting tin and add enough hot water to come about halfway up their sides, thus creating a bain-marie.  Transfer carefully to the oven and cook for 40 minutes until just set.
  7. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  8. Just before serving sprinkle each custard with a tablespoon of demerara sugar.  Place under a hot preheated grill to melt the sugar, being careful not to burn it.  Allow the melted sugar to cool for 5 minutes before serving.