6 cups water
2 duck eggs plus 1 yolk
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups whole milk
½ tsp. vanilla powder*
½ tsp. nutmeg
• Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
• Place the water in a kettle on the stove and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and leave the water in the kettle with the lid on.
• Lightly spray six 7-ounce ramekins with nonstick cooking spray and place in a 15-by-10-by-2-inch baking dish.
• Whisk together the eggs, extra egg yolk, sugar and vanilla extract in a bowl. Set aside.
• Pour the milk in a heavy saucepan and heat over medium-low heat to a simmer (just below boiling).
• Turn off the burner, and slowly pour the egg mixture into the hot milk, whisking as you pour.
• Remove any shells or curdled milk bits by pouring the custard through a fine strainer into a 3-cup measuring cup or a bowl with a lip.
• Pour ½ cup of the custard into each ramekin. Sprinkle a pinch of powdered vanilla and nutmeg on top of each.
• Make a hot water bath by pouring 1 inch of the hot (but not boiling) water from the kettle into the baking dish. The water should reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
• Bake for 35 minutes, or until the custard is set, but still loose. Remove from the oven and let the ramekins rest in the water bath until they are cool.
• Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
* Available in the spice section at Straub’s