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Cappuccino Bavarian Cream

Scott Phillips

Servings: 8

Bavarian cream is a flavored crème anglaise (custard sauce), lightened with whipped cream and set with gelatin. This sumptuous version is flavored with espresso powder.


  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 6 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2 Tbs. espresso powder
  • 3 Tbs. dark rum
  • 1 envelope unflavored powdered gelatin
  • 2 cups heavy cream, more for garnish
  • Chocolate-covered coffee beans or cinnamon, for garnish


  • Put the milk in a saucepan and sprinkle the surface evenly with 3 Tbs. of the sugar, but do not stir (the sugar will sink to the bottom of the pan and prevent the milk from burning). Put the pan over medium-high heat, being careful that the flame doesn’t climb up the sides of the pan. Without stirring, allow the milk to come to a simmer.
  • Meanwhile, prepare an ice water bath by filling a large metal bowl with a few inches of ice and water. Put the egg yolks in a slightly smaller mixing bowl, and whisk them, gradually adding the remaining sugar while whisking constantly, until the yolks begin to ribbon and lighten in color.
  • When the milk mixture comes to a simmer, take it off the heat, stir in the espresso powder until it’s dissolved, and slowly whisk half of the milk mixture into the yolk mixture. Then whisk the hot milk and yolk mixture back into the saucepan.
  • Put the saucepan over medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon in an exaggerated figure-eight motion (this method ensures that you’ll reach both the center and the edges of the pan, which prevents scorching), until the sauce thickens enough that it coats the back of the spoon and holds a line drawn through it with a finger. The temperature should be about 175ºF. Immediately remove the pan from the heat, strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a clean stainless-steel mixing bowl, and set the bowl in the ice-water bath. Stir occasionally until the sauce is cooled, and set aside.
  • Put the rum in a small bowl and sprinkle it with the gelatin. Let it sit for about 10 minutes until the gelatin softens, then place the bowl in a larger bowl of warm water to melt the gelatin.
  • In a large bowl, whip the cream until it forms soft peaks.
  • Slowly whisk a portion of the custard sauce into the softened gelatin, then whisk the gelatin mixture back into the remaining custard. Set the custard back over the ice bath and stir until thickened. Fold in the whipped cream.
  • Pour the Bavarian cream into 8 cappuccino cups or ramekins and chill for 8 hours, or until firm. Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of chocolate coffee beans or cinnamon.


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