This traditional Australian dessert is simple to make – who wouldn’t love a thick layer of custard between two sheets of pastry? Vanilla Slice is where it’s at!
Our dinner group is back at it again – exploring cuisines from other countries is something that we started last year and have had a blast with this idea ever since. We’ve enjoyed making food from India, Italy (Vanilla Milk Gelato), Ireland, Spain (Spanish-Style Meatballs and Marinated Olives & Manchego Cheese), South Africa (definitely one of the favorites!), Brazil, Jamaica, Mexico, Canada, the Middle East and Scandanavia. It’s somewhat of a challenge each time we do because we have to peruse Pinterest or wherever to decide what to make and it’s time consuming to make 2 or 3 dishes and a dessert that you’ve never made before in the same day. But it’s been a ton of flavorful fun!
Our Australian themed dinner menu included –
Old Croc Smoked Cheddar Cheese – this cheese is imported from Australia and is SO GOOD, I might start buying it all the time
Damper – a pheasant bread that was easy to make and had a biscuit type texture, I made a plain and a cheddar garlic loaf
Vegemite – spread on toasted baguette and topped with mashed avocado…must be an acquired taste, none of us were fans 😉
Macadamia Nut Crusted Chicken
Australian Meat Pie
Various Australian cookies/candies
Depending on the country, we’ve found ingredients etc. at the international food store in our area, World Market or the international section of our local Meijer store. Pictured above is part of the dessert spread – my friend Sara made a beautiful pavlova topped with kiwi, strawberry and passion fruit curd (ohmygosh, it was amazing!) Good thing pavlova is light and airy because Vanilla Slice is pretty much the opposite – a bit on the heavy side, but oh so delicious!
- 1 pkg. (2 sheets) PUFF PASTRY, defrosted
- 2 cups MILK
- 2 cups HALF & HALF
- 1 cup SUGAR
- ¾ cup CORNSTARCH
- ½ cup INSTANT VANILLA PUDDING (1 3.4 oz. pkg)
- 3 EGG YOLKS
- 1 Tablespoon VANILLA EXTRACT
- 4 Tablespoons BUTTER, room temperature
- POWDERED SUGAR
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a parchment paper lined baking sheet, unfold one sheet of puff pastry and gently prick with a fork. Repeat with 2nd sheet of puff pastry on another baking sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.
- Line a 9x9 pan with foil, making sure to leave an overhang over the sides to remove the dessert before slicing. Press one piece of cooled puff pastry into the bottom of the pan, trim the corners if needed. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, heat milk until just simmering.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together half & half, sugar, cornstarch, instant pudding and egg yolks. Once this is smooth, add to saucepan with milk.
- Whisk frequently and cook mixture over medium heat until bubbling and thickened. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla extract and butter. Spoon over bottom crust in one smooth layer.
- Add 2nd piece of puff pastry and press down gently. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours.
- To serve: use foil edges to remove entire thing from pan, use a serrated knife to cut into squares. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.
Recipe Source: Baking Bites
Vanilla treat recipes…