Chocolate Natas

A rich, chocolatey take on a Portuguese classic.


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Lightly grease insides of a 12-muffin tin. Roll puff pastry into a cylinder and divide into 12. Press into bottom and sides of muffin cups. 
  3. Place egg yolks in a bowl.
  4. Pour milk and cornstarch into a small pot. Mix well to dilute cornstarch. Add sugar and vanilla. Stir over medium heat for a few minutes until mixture thickens slightly. Watch carefully—the consistency changes rapidly! Remove from heat.
  5. Slowly add ½ cup warm milk mixture to egg yolks, beating lightly. This step warms the egg yolks but must not cook them.
  6. Add egg mixture to remaining milk in pot, beating lightly. 
  7. Fill muffin cups, leaving 1 cm of pastry free at the top. (The mixture will expand and contract.) Bake 20–25 minutes or until pastry is golden. 
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before loosening from tin.

Le Coup de Grâce

Montreal, Quebec

Samuel Joubert may claim he’s no professional chef, but his immeasurable love of all things food-related sets him apart from other epicureans.

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