I’ve seen a bunch of videos (eg on YouTube) which show a custard and chiffon cake recipe. This custard is essentially:

  • Egg yolks
  • Condensed milk
  • Milk or evaporated milk

My preferred custard is quite thick and uses the Delia Smith recipe, which I would usually put on/in a meringue (great with pavlova.) This is typically:

  • Cream
  • Egg yolks
  • Corn starch

I would like to use this custard recipe inside (or under) the cake, but I would like to know if it will split? Would baking custard in a cake be better using the condensed milk version or could the Delia recipe work just as well?

I’m asking because I can’t try it now or any time soon due to travelling :(


2 Answers 2


These aren't the same kind of custard. Delia's version is a traditional English pouring custard. The other is a set custard.

If you try to bake Delia's it will likely split and not set. I would use the recipe that is intended for baking. I'm pretty sure Delia will have other recipes that use a set custard though, as these are also pretty common here in the UK.

In fact she does have one she uses for traditional English custard tarts

  • Thank you. The two variations seem remarkably close, to me. But at least I’m in the U.K. so I can get really thick double cream!
    – Matt W
    Commented Apr 17, 2022 at 11:59
  • 1
    @MattW - I don't think you need "really thick" double cream. Delia only uses single cream for her set custard tarts. It's actually the eggs which are responsible for making a set custard.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Apr 17, 2022 at 12:06
  • No, sure, I just prefer it.
    – Matt W
    Commented Apr 17, 2022 at 12:07

If your dead set on making it there are plenty of sources to recipes for baking custards, as you put it. However, chemistry always beats home recipes so there are options for canned and powdered custards of varying quality, some of which will just be better than what you or any other home cook and/or pastry chef can create. I know it's hard to believe, but a lot of chemists and chemical engineers these days are starting to use higher grades of base products in creating what I term as "lab perfect" products, it's not even about longer shelf life, they can also control aspects of emulsion that cannot be replicated in a home kitchen.

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