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Birds's Custard powder

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This is a quick and easy way to make traditional British custard on the hob. You mix 2 tablespoons of powder with some sugar and milk and mix to a paste. Then add 1 pint of nearly boiling milk, and heat gently to the boil. Serve over your favorite pudding!

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    19 Reviews
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      01.12.2013 17:33
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      A lovely creamy custard

      Now the winter is here I find there is nothing more comforting than a good dessert absolutely covered in custard!

      For me, it has to be Birds. My mum always used to buy this brand and so it is what I know. I have never bought any other brand, in fact, I don't think I could name another custard powder brand. I never buy ready made custard as I just don't see the need. This is so simple to make and wow does it taste good and creamy!

      Cost wise I have no issue with this - a 600g tub costs £2 from Tesco and considering you use 2 tablespoons of this to make a pint of custard, you can see that it will last you for ages - even with the way my boyfriend gets through it!

      To make it, you put 2 tablespoons of this powder in a jug with 2 tablespoons of caster sugar and add a little milk, taken from a pint. Mix the powder, sugar and milk into a smooth dark yellow paste and heat the remaining milk on the hob, stirring.

      When the milk is hot, pour into the jug containing the dark yellow paste and then return the whole lot to the saucepan. Continue to stir while it heats through and it will thicken up.

      The packet says that you have to stir it continually so it doesn't go lumpy but I have never had this problem. I have had completely perfect results every time with this.

      The custard is a lovely yellow colour and is sweet and creamy tasting. It goes well with pretty much any pudding or even just with some sliced banana and a 600g tub will last you for ages so it is great value.

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      21.10.2010 13:16
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      thick, smooth, creamy, quick custard

      This is the custard powder my mum has always used and you will now always find a tub in my cupboard. I cannot stand instant custard powders where you just add hot water they tasteless and not creamy at all like custard should be.

      ~~~~~Packaging~~~~~
      Bird's custard powder comes in a thick cardboard tub with a red plastic pull off lid. The first time you open the custard you will also find a foil seal to keep the product fresh and to prevent tampering.
      The tub is Red, Yellow and Blue with the Bird's logo in the front. On the back you can find nutritional information and cooking instructions.

      ~~~~~Price~~~~~
      The custard powder can be found in all larger supermarkets with a 300g tub costing around £0.94 (the last price I paid in Tesco). This in my opinion is excellent value as one tub will make many pints of custard.

      ~~~~~How to Make~~~~~
      I make the custard to the exact instructions on the back of the tub:
      1. Put 2 tablespoons (35g) of custard powder and 1-2 tablespoons (15-35g) of sugar in a basin.
      2. Mix into a smooth paste with a little (approx 2 tablespoons) milk taken from 1 pint.
      3. Heat the remaining milk to nearly boiling and pour onto custard mix, stirring well.
      4. Return to the saucepan and bring to the boil over a gentle heat, stirring continuously.
      This for me always produces smooth, creamy, lump free custard. You can also use the microwave instructions but I am yet to try this as I always prefer to use my cooker.

      ~~~~~A Quick Cheap Pudding~~~~~
      This is a pudding my mother often made especially when money was a little on the sparse side but I love it and still make it now.
      Add two slices of a shop brought jam swiss roll to a bowl, add half a sliced banana and top with hot birds custard.
      A more filling and sweet take on bananas and custard but lovely and comforting.

      ~~~~~My Opinion~~~~~
      Apart from the odd special occasion where I will make my own custard from scratch I always have a tub of Bird's custard powder in my cupboard for a quick easy custard. The pink powder makes a thick, smooth custard to go with any pudding. I use it to pour over sponges, crumbles and to make a trifle. It is delicious both hot and cold and is fantastic value for money. I always use with semi-skimmed milk but for a creamier custard then whole milk can be used instead.
      This is an essential that will always have a place in my kitchen to finish off a great pudding with a great custard.

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        03.05.2010 10:57
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        Good all round food which can adapt to a number of things

        Almost every one likes custard , but fears making it , with Birds Custard powder , it is really easy to make custard at half the price of some of the less tasty ready made brands

        Custard has a variety of uses from being a sauce when warm , to being the basic base for making ice cream when cold , and of course the basic filling for a trifle , and custard slices , so it really is versatile , as its vanilla in base flavor , by adding a few drops of rum , or some cooking chocolate and allowing to set you have a flavorsome alternative to a mouse.

        Instructions come on the tin with regard to making what the manufacturers consider the perfect custard , and some people will tell you that you can make it with water , however I have to say , that I have never made it this way and really dont think it would be that nice

        I find the difference between consistencies depends on the amount of milk used , the less milk used the thicker the custard , for a thiner add more milk than the recommended pint it also helps to heat the milk in the pan, but reserve a little milk and make a paste with the sugar again for less sweet use less sugar , I have also found candarell works well then add the warm milk to your paste , this save it getting lumpy

        For an added treat I some times substitute half the milk with some double cream and it produces a really nice creamy custard .

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        20.04.2010 20:12
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        Well worth trying

        I am a massive fan of custard, preferably eaten hot (unless it is in a pastry and then cold is delicious!) and have tried quite a few different brands. I must admit that my favourite is Ambrosia tinned custard but unfortunately, Ambrosia does tend to be the most expensive one, but the reason for that is that it is so, so much better than the competitors. Having said that, this instant custard mix from Bird's is a pretty decent and significantly cheaper alternative to create delicious custard in minutes.

        I have tried quite a few custard mixes and while a few have been quite good, this one is a little superior and worth paying the extra for. It still works out much cheaper than ready made custard and a tin lasts for ages (you can also buy sachets of instant custard powder for individual use) in the cupboard.

        A 300g tub will cost around £0.80 and can be found in most supermarkets. The tub is easy to spot as it is bright red, yellow and blue.

        The powder is easy to prepare, you simply mix a little bit of milk with the required amount and some sugar (you can use the full amount of sugar as recommended on the tub or a little less if you prefer), creating a paste. Meanwhile, heat up the remaining amount of milk and stir in the paste, whisking gently. Within a few minutes you have a delicious looking creamy yellow custard.

        The taste is also delicious, it is sweet without being sickly, creamy and has that delicious warming and sweet taste that is distinctive to custard. Unfortunately, it is best eaten in moderation as it isn't very good for you, which is a shame because it really is great!

        Whether you are using this custard to pour over desserts, make trifle or puddings or just enjoying it alone, you are sure to enjoy it. The tub lasts for ages and it is easy to prepare the exact amount that you want. Sweet lovers will enjoy the delicious creamy taste too, well worth buying!

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        17.03.2010 09:07
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        good value for cheap price

        I have always loved custard, I like it hot or cold and I do not mind if it is instant from a packet or made from this powder, I have been using this product for many years, it is a well known brand and easy to make.

        It comes in a nice round little plastic type of tub with a pull off lid, to reveal a baby pink sweet smelling powder, the smell hits you as soon as the lid is opened.

        For a 300g tub the price is amazingly cheap, I paid 69p for mine from Tesco but can be found in any supermarket or small store and sometimes I have seen offers available for 2 for £1, which is even better value for money.

        It is very easy to make with 1 pint of milk use a little from it to mix in a jug with 2 tablespoons of the powder and 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar and mix to a smooth paste, heat the remaining milk in a pan and heat on a hob to almost boiling point and pour into the jug and stir well and it becomes thick and ready to use, depending on how sweet you like it, you can add a little bit more sugar to your powder at the beginning but I think the amount advised is perfect as it is quite sweet.

        I also do the same as the above except I put the cold milk to the sugar and powder mixture in the jug and put it in the microwave for a couple of minutes and I take it out and stir well and keep stirring every 1 minute after that until it is the consistancy I need it, you do have to keep a check on it as it becomes quite thick quickly and it can then be too thick for your use.


        The bright red, yellow and blue colours on the tub are very attractive and very easy to spot on a shelf.

        This product can be used for a pudding poured over cakes or as I do alot is use in a trifle and it is easy to put in a little dish for a child as a pudding also. It is perfect for parties for young children. It tastes delicious and is very smooth and creamy and it is easy for a child to swallow quite easily.

        It is also available in packets for instant custard, and I am sure I have seen them in tiny pots ready made in the fridges in supermarkets but I cannot be certain.

        I recommend this to anyone and for the price I do not think it can be beaten as it lasts for such a long time it is amazing value for money.

        I give this a 5 star rate.

        Give it a try and see for yourself.

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        12.03.2010 18:11
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        well recommended

        We all love custard in our houise but I only usually make it when it's a special occasion or weekends when, as a family, we actually all get time to sit down & eat.

        I've used Birds for as long as I can remember & used to love tucking into my Mum or Granny's pan even before it was served up. I think it turns something good into something a bit special although I must admit to having eaten loads plain (with brown sugar added) during my first pregnancy.

        I've served it with just strained canned or fresh fruit (when I haven't anything else in an emergency), with crumbles, jellies. rolypoly puddings, sweet pies, in trifles & with ice cream dishes. I've used the cans of custard & the instant packet mixes & although these are highly convenient I find the pleasure of making it from a tin quite relaxing & think it tastes better - especially if you add a vanilla pod.

        The tin itself is so easy to spot in the supermarkets & I think the colours/logo have barely changed since I was little. You just need a blunt knife or coin to open the tin lid & then peel back the paper which seals the custard.

        The smell hits you straight away - funnily enough it smells of custard! & is like a floury powder. All the directions are given clearly on label on the back of the label but 2 things I'd like to point out here -
        1. Don't heat up the milk too quickly if you're using the pan method - I've found it spoils the end taste & can burn your pan.
        2. If you like thinner custard add more milk before you start to make it up (adding it later may cause lumps) similarly, add less if you want to have a thicker custard for trifle. I add a vanilla pod whilst gently bringing the milk to a simmer rather than a boil - lovely.

        Once you start heating & mixing the sugar it turns from a white to a lovely yellow colour & is ready in only a few moments.

        I've always found Birds to be consistently good & their custard is notonly a good colour & texture but is nice & sweet (not overly so) & nice & creamy & it's well woth the £1.19 I paid for my 300g tin.

        A must-have for my kitchen!

        I'm not telling you about ythe calories, fat etc as I've just had some & don't want to depress myself lol! However all the info is there if you wish to read the label as are the ingredients, methods to use, storage time etc.

        recommended - I just HAVE to give this 5 stars

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          11.03.2010 02:56
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          Yummy, I'm off to get some now!

          Both me and my mate who I'm staying with at the moment love our puddings. In the evenings we love to munch on fattening desserts such as rhubarb crumbles and bread and butter puddings and we always have a tub of this in the cupboard as nine times out of ten we forget to buy cream and this in a tub and easy to make up on demand is in our opinion a real store cupboard essential and comes in handy ever so often in our kitchen!

          The Packaging:

          Red, dark blue and yellow cardboard round shaped tub with a red plastic pull on/off lid to the top of it. On the front of the tub I am told that it is Bird's Custard Powder 'The traditional recipe in an easy to open and reseal pack'. Other information given on the back of the tub includes being told a bit about the product, ingredients and the weight is stated (in this case it's a 300g size), a full nutritional chart is listed, directions for use are given and contact details for Premier Ambient Products are listed (the manufacturer of the product). Nice easy to use and informative tube this is!

          Me Using It:

          Well all you do is mix it up with a little sugar and milk and then you can put it in a saucepan for a couple of minutes till it thickens up or in the microwave! It's easy and personally we heat this up either way as it simply makes no difference at all to the flavour.

          Mixing this up is ever so simple! I simply use a couple of tablespoons of the fine white powder and about the same of sugar and then blend a little milk to it to create a paste and then eventually I top that milk up to 1 pint. I beat it really well and find it easy to get any lumps out prior to heating it. Within a couple of minutes of heating it I end up with a full bodied and glossy looking custard that isn't at all gloopy but not runny and/or stodgy either with a nice custardy aroma to it to boot!

          Verdict:

          Very easy to make up custard this really is. I love the taste of this and of course you can make it as sweet as you choose to, substitute sugar for sweeteners and although I use a full fat milk to make up my custard with this my Mum only ever uses skimmed milk and it is equally as fine as mine to be fair to her! Eat it any way you like, add it to trifles etc, it's a great custard and from now on shall always live in a cupboard by me!

          Nutritional Information Per 100g With Whole Milk:

          Energy: 99 Kcal
          Protein: 14.1g
          Carbohydrate: 14.1g
          of which sugars: 9.6g
          Fat: 3.5g
          of which saturates: 2.2g
          Fibre: Trace
          Sodium: 0.1g
          Salt Equivalent: 0.2g

          Available in all good supermarkets etc and expect to pay about 78p a tub!

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            29.11.2009 08:30
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            Makes fab creamy custard

            I love custard.... it's probably in my top ten favourite foods, I love it served with crumbles and fruit pies but I also will happily polish a great big bowl of the stuff on it's own. It does seem to be one of those things that people seem to love or hate and unfortunately my husband falls into the latter category. This means I have neglected my calling to the gorgeous yellow stuff in recent yearsand I only seem to eat it if I am eating out or I am visiting my mum, who does a fab apple crumble.

            If I have bought custard recently I have always tended to go for the tinned ready to eat stuff opposed to the custard powder. It has just seemed easier and there is not threat of messing it up and ending up with custard that is either too runny or even worse.... lumpy.

            When I had my girls I was quite excited about giving them custard for the first time, hoping that they would love it as this would give me the excuse to serve it up on a more regular basis. The only slight concern I had was that I was aware that the tinned stuff contained quite a lot of sugar and this is something that I wasnted to avoid.

            Whilst in the supermarket and taking a look at the options available I had a lood look at the stuff my mum always used... Bird's Custard Powder. After looking at the instructions on the side of the pot I could see that this did not contain sugar instead you added it to sweeten whilst making the custard up. This was the perfect for me so into the trolley this went. This option was also much cheaper than the ready made stuff - a 300g of the custard powder only cost 77p which I thought was incredibly reasonable.

            Ok so I tried it out on my girls that very evening, I followed the instructions and made the custard up with milk in a pan on the hob. I did not add any sugar as I was intending to sweeten with banana for my girls. I have to say I did not leave the pan for a second taking great pains to keep stirring at all times. That really would be my tip as all of a sudden the custard just thickens up and if you miss this point it could either burn or become really lumpy.

            I added the mashed up banana and stirred it up and then a bowl to each of my girls. They were impressed they had a new pudding to try and soo were shovelling it down. They both really enjoyed it and finished off their portions very quickly. I also had a quick taste and the banana had sweetened it up enough without the need for additional sugar.

            I have since made the custard many times both for myself and my girls but I do have to admit to a sweet tooth and when making it for myself i do add the sugar.. do as I say not as I do....scrummy

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              31.10.2009 19:46
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              Yellow goodness

              Custard - we all love the stuff... don't we? Actually, I used to dislike it with a passion. I think my hatred came from years of school dinners which included a lumpy excuse for the normally tasty yellow stuff as an accompaniment to some equally tasteless apple pie. It took me a while to realise that custard actually wasn't that bad, and I soon noticed that it doesn't by nature have to have lumpy bits in it.

              As far as custard brands go, 'Birds' has to be the nation's favourite, and out of all the custard products sold in the UK - 45% is produced by Bird's - that's a pretty big share of the market.

              Price & Availability
              - - - - - - - - - - - -
              You can currently buy the 300g tub of custard powder for 77p in all the supermarkets. I've also seen the powder for sale in corner shops and some newsagents - so it's a widely stocked commodity.

              Ingredients
              - - - - - - - -
              Bird's custard contains;
              Corn Flour, Salt, Colour (Annatto), and Flavouring - that's it, there are no hidden nasty ingredients or dodgy e-numbers.

              Cooking Instructions
              - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
              Although making your own custard can be a little time consuming, it's a fairly easy preparation process;
              Put two tablespoons of custard and one tablespoon of sugar in a bowl. Then mix it with two tablespoons of milk taken from a pint. Heat the remaining milk until near boiling point and then pour on the custard mix. Finally bring to the boil over a gentle heat whilst continually stirring - easy!

              Taste & Appearance
              - - - - - - - - - - - - -
              The flavour of the custard is really delicious, and in my opinion, the only decent accompaniment to some tasty apple or rhubarb crumble. I have tried other custard brands in the past, but Bird's to me always tastes the best.

              The good thing about buying the custard in powder form is the fact that it seems to last for ages - certainly a lot longer than the pre-made custard which generally costs more and has to be used straight away once opened - therefore, for economy purposes, powder is the way to go.

              All in all, I would highly recommend Bird's custard powder as a tasty and easy to prepare delicacy - could do with some now actually :)

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                24.09.2009 19:12
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                Traditional product which is hard to beat

                Custard has to be one of the foods people either love or hate. My family and I love it and I find it a great comfort food which takes me back to my childhood in an instant - lots of steaming puds and lashings of custard!

                A big thank you must go to Alfred Bird who invented custard powder in 1837 because his wife was allergic to eggs. From that day on Bird's Custard never looked back. It was even sent to the a Armed Forces in the First World War.

                The packaging of the custard powder hasn't changed so much over the years. The main difference being that it is now in a rigid cardboard drum with a plastic lid rather than the traditional round tin. With its red, blue and yellow distinctive colouring and the little birds it is very familar to lots of people, even those who don't like custard.

                Custard can be eaten by anybody, young children, people who have trouble chewing food or who have sore mouths for whatever reason, people who can't be bothered to chew food because they feel under the weather and loads of people who just love custard!

                It is so easy to make. Just mix two tablespoons of custard powder with a little cold milk and sugar to taste in a pint jug or bowel and then add the rest of a pint of milk and microwave on full power for 2 mins, stir, then another 2 mins, stir and then 1 min. By this time the custard will have thickened nicely and be ready to pour on the dessert of your choice or just eat on its own. The instructions on the tub are slightly different for microwave cooking but I have found the above to be best for me having suffered exploding custard several times, which makes a mess of the microwave and is a waste of good custard! You can, of course, heat the milk on the hob and then add to the powder, which has been mixed with a little milk, putting it all back into the saucepan and heating until thickened, stirring all the time.

                Custard is so versatile. It can be eaten on its own or with a variety of deserts or stewed fruit. It can be enjoyed hot or cold and is a perfect topping for trifle. I have attempted to make my own custard from scratch with eggs but quite frankly I didn't find all that stirring and worrying about it curdling or going lumpy much fun and I actually prefer the taste of Bird's Custard.

                Bird's Custard Powder does come in sachets as well as the drums and also in an instant version that just requires mixing with water. I have to say that I prefer my custard made with milk though. There is also the type found in the chiller section of the supermarkets which is labeled "fresh" custard and is already made up just ready to pour. I find this ok for the odd occasions that I am in a rush but generally I much prefer to make my own with the Bird's powder and find this much better for putting on the top of trifles as it sets better than the fresh variety.

                Nutritional information
                Custard made with 1 pint skimmed milk
                Calories 68
                Sugar 9.5g
                Fat 0.2g

                Of course these amounts will be slightly more if custard is made with semi-skimmed or full fat milk.

                The cost of a 300g tub is 78p which makes it a very cheap accompaniment to a pudding or dessert in its own right.

                I have in the past tried supermarket own brand custard powder when I am on a cost cutting exercise but quite frankly none of them has proved to be as tasty as Bird's Custard Powder and not worth the tiny amount of saving. Bird's Custard Powder is one product that the supermarket own brands can't beat.

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                  09.03.2009 23:21
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                  The Next Best Invention To The Telephone

                  Birds Custard Powder is the very clever invention of a man who must have loved his wife very dearly. His name was Alfred Bird and in 1837 he came up with the idea because his wife liked dessert custard but was allergic to eggs.

                  Conventional custard is made from cream, egg yolks, vanilla and sugar but quite incredibly Birds Custard Powder contains just cornflower, salt and some flavourings and colourings.

                  To make it into dessert custard you simply add 1.5 table spoons of sugar to 2 tablespoons of the powder, then add 2 tablespoons of milk which you have taken from a pint of milk and mix these all into a paste. Now add the rest of the milk. Then you bring it all to the boil, heating it up while stirring it.

                  This Bird fellow either had far too much time on his hands or else he was some kind of Professor of Custard Technology.

                  The Custard Powder is so clever and so lightweight to transport that during the two World Wars it was used to help supply the armed forces with food and also as an easily usable, long shelf lifed food for the civilian population to eat.

                  During World War II there was strict food rationing for the civilian population and people caught breaking the rules were taken into custody for questioning.

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                  22.02.2009 20:20
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                  powder to make custard

                  Mention Custard and most people will think of Bird's custard powder, it has been on the market since 1837, invented by a gentleman called Alfred Bird to replace the typical egg custard sauce which was used then with desserts. Bird's taste cannot be beaten by cheaper versions in my opinion, as when we were on a very tight budget I used to buy shops own makes but they always lacked that lovely taste. It is suitable for vegetarians and using fresh milk it provides some protein.

                  *Ingredients*
                  The main ingredient is cornflour giving it that silky feeling, salt is next, then colouring and flavouring, but I don't think there is a lot of salt, just enough to bring the flavour out. The colouring is natural.

                  *Packaging*
                  The squat cardboard tub is lined with foil and there is a red plastic lid. The tub is brightly coloured in red, yellow and blue and has a picture of the three birds which is a trade mark. The nutritional values, instructions and quantity - 300grams in this case are also shown.

                  *Contents*
                  The tub is full of soft, silky powder in a pale creamy peach colour and there is a lovely smell, sweet and almost vanilla like. But tasting it at this stage is not nice, it isn't sweet at all.

                  *Instructions*
                  The simplest way is to make it in a non-stick saucepan on the hob, but you can use a microwave. To make a pint of custard you need 2 tablespoons of custard powder and sugar mixed with some milk taken from 1 pint. Heat the remainder of the milk and pour onto the mixture then return to the pan and bring to the boil, stirring all the time until it thickens. You can vary the thickness by adding more custard powder if you need it to set for a trifle, or slightly less if you want thin pouring custard.
                  I prefer to use fresh milk and like semi skimmed, but you can use full cream milk or dried reconstituted milk. I always think if you use sterilised milk it spoils the taste.

                  *What happens*
                  In case you've never made custard, as soon as liquid mixes with the powder it turns a beautiful yellow, and as the powder heats the cornflour grains swell and thicken the liquid, and the dry powdery taste changes to a sweet custard.

                  *Nutritional Information*
                  Using skimmed milk a 100gram serving has 68kcals, 3.2grams protein and 14grams of carbohydrate.

                  *Serve with?*
                  I can eat Apple pie with cream or ice cream, but it is also lovely with custard, but I always want custard with crumble or a steamed pudding. It is also delicious if any is left and kept in the fridge the next day.

                  *Other uses*
                  I also use custard powder to make custard creams, the powder is mixed in with the flour and gives the biscuits a lovely flavour and colour and some more goes into the butter cream with the icing sugar. Naomi bars too have custard powder in the butter icing, a beautiful combination with the chocolate and coconut mixture.

                  *Any disadvantages?*
                  Yes! Apart from being fattening if you eat too much, I dislike the skin that forms if you don't eat it immediately. I'm fine with skin on trifle, but not hot skin! Fortunately there are others in my family who will eat it!

                  *Cost*
                  I paid 95pence for the 300gram tub and I noticed that it is £1.73 for a 600gram tub from Tesco. That means you can make a gallon of custard for 95p!

                  *Verdict*
                  Delicious custard every time, it is so much easier than making with eggs. I don't know how people make lumpy custard, but I've never had a problem and the instructions are easy. Much nicer than tinned or instant.

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                    21.01.2009 17:22
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                    Great served with hot puddings

                    Pudding without custard? a bit like having a shoe without a sole!
                    Custard compliments so many puddings, hot custard with steamed sponges, fruit tarts , jam roly poly, treacle tarts and one of my favorites Banana custard.
                    Now don't get me wrong, if a packet of instant custard was all that was in my store cupboard then I would have no hesitation in using it, if a carton of custard was the only option again I would use it. but if time is on my side and I have enough fresh milk then I much prefer some homemade Birds Custard.
                    I realise that you can use dried milk to make the custard but I really prefer fresh milk.
                    Another custard pudding that is great is Manchester Tart, a cooked pastry case with a layer of jam spread on the bottom, filled with cool custard and shredded coconut spread on the top.



                    Birds custard powder has been packaged in the cylindrical drum for as long as I can ever recall, the drum is now made from a thick cardboard and years ago it may have been in a tin , i`m not certain of that though!
                    The drum has a striking colour scheme, red to the top, yellow in the centre and royal blue at the bottom.
                    The words `Bird`s custard powder` stand out well on the front.



                    Custard is pretty simple to make, put just under a pint of fresh milk into a saucepan and put it onto the hob to heat. mix two heaped tablespoonfuls of Bird`s custard powder with a tablespoon of sugar and a drop of milk, cream this together.
                    As the milk starts to get really hot then gently pour the custard mixture slowly into the milk, stir constantly with a wooden spoon while the custard starts to thicken.
                    You will notice that the thickening takes place rapidly, turn the heat right down and let the powder cook through properly. Last of all check that the custard is sweet enough for you. Then you are ready to serve it.



                    A 300g drum of Bird`s custard powder costs in the region of86p and it does go a long way.
                    After you first open it the drum reseals easily. The custard is fine for Vegetarians and is free from artificial colours.



                    Bird`s custard powder is a combination of Cornflour, salt and flavouring. The colour comes from a seed pulp from the annato tree. This natural colouring is often used in cheeses, margarine's, butter, rice and smoked fish too.



                    The leading supermarkets usually have tubs of ready made custard, I have to say that this custard is delicious too, often they have added fresh cream and it tastes heavenly. The one thing that weighs in Bird`s favour is that the tubs are much more expensive and are only ever bought for high days and holidays.
                    So all in all I reckon Bird`s have the upper hand.

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                      19.12.2008 12:15
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                      Bird's Original Custard Powder

                      Christmas is just around the corner and as such my mind turns to things like Christmas Pudding and mince pies and these would not be complete without a healthy topping of Bird's custard!!

                      Custard is a thick sauce, typically served with a desert as it is sweet when made with sugar but can also be used for quiches bases and other savoury foods. Bird's Custard is actually a brand name for a type of custard powder. It is cornflour-based, and thickens to form a custard-like sauce when mixed with milk and heated to a sufficient temperature.

                      It was invented in 1837 by a gentleman called Alfred Bird (hence the name Bird's) because his wife was allergic to eggs which is the key ingredient used to thicken traditional custard.

                      Of course, there are lots of other versions of custard powder available to buy in the shops but Bird's is typically the original and the best in my opinion and in the opinion of the rest of the UK apparently. According to an article I read, in 2000, the results of a food and drink survey found that 99% of customers recognised the brand and it actually accounts for 45% of the custard consumed in the UK.

                      The packaging itself is very easy to recognise. It comes in a tin with a bright red lid and then a red stripe, a yellow stripe in the middle and a blue stripe at the bottom. Bird's is written prominently on the front and there are two little birds next to it. On the tin there are some written words to tell you all about the brand. These say, " loved by generations ever since 1837. Bird's custard is made and served in millions of homes where proper custard is at the heart of a good pud." I definitely have to agree, custard to me always tops of a pud perfectly.

                      Now, the custard itself is very easy to make. The instant powder already contains powdered milk and sugar and only requires the consumer to add hot water to make the custard. This is extremely easy and convenient but not my favourite way of making it. I like the original powder to which you have to add the milk and sugar and then heat more milk on the stove before adding it to the rest of the paste to make a lovely "homemade" custard. In my opinion I think this tin also tastes better and tends to turn out thicker than when you just add water to the instant version.

                      Either way, the custard does come out a lovely golden yellow colour. I would actually probably call it a canary yellow colour. When you pour in either the hot water or milk do remember to stir quite vigorously so as not to create a lumpy custard or a film on top of the sauce. If you then let the custard stand for a few minutes it will go lovely and thick and creamy. You can adjust the thickness to suit your own tastes which is nice, if you like it thicker don't add as much milk/water and vice versa.

                      The tins themselves come in several sizes but since I have the 300g tin at the moment I will list the nutritional values based on that. Per 100g with skimmed milk added to the powder there are 68 calories. If you add whole milk the calories are higher but I stick with just skimmed milk.

                      If you've never tried custard the taste can be described as quite sweet, with a creamy texture to it. It has a thick, syrupy texture too it and tends to coat food and stick to the food you pour it on which gives the desert an all over covering and you are guaranteed a custardy taste with every bite!

                      In my opinion go for the original powder and you are guaranteed a great accompaniment to your deserts!

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                        30.11.2008 18:43
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                        Great tasting custard

                        Bird's Custard Powder is a very traditional way of making custard, particularly for me, and I remember having this on countless occasions when I was a kid. These days, you can buy tins of ready made custard, packets of powder that you just add boiling water to, and various other combinations of cooking and mixing to give a good tasting, but Bird's remains a firm favourite of mine.

                        One of the reasons I prefer this to other custard powders is because of the taste. For the majority of foods, I give a certain amount of leeway depending on the product, but custard needs to taste properly like custard for me, and this product gets it right.

                        It comes in a tub as shown in the picture, with a push on and pull off lid that keeps the product sealed and fresh for as long as possible. Inside, there is a very fine powder, with a faintly pink hue, and you need merely follow the instructions. To make a pint of custard, you need 2 tablespoons of this custard powder, 2 of sugar, and a pint of milk. Mix in the powder, sugar and a couple of splashes of the milk to make it into a paste. Then you have a choice.

                        To make the custard on the hob, heat the remaining milk until it boils and then add it to the paste, mixing it in. If you want to use a microwave, then add the remaining milk to the paste straight away and put it in the microwave for 6 minutes, stirring a couple of times in the middle.

                        The end result is the same - a lovely custard that will complement any dessert. The only drawbacks for this custard is that you do need to add the milk and sugar, whereas other products just need you to add water or heat the custard up. However, these products aren't as tasty as this custard, and it is this that I prefer. I also like, surprisingly enough, Tesco Value tinned custard, but I guess there's an anomaly for everything!

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