From Mrs. Beeton's Dictionary of Every-day Cookery
"CUSTARDS, Boiled Ingredients - 1 pint of milk, 5 eggs, 3 oz of loaf sugar, 3 laurel leaves or the rind of fresh lemon, or a few drops of essence of vanilla, 1 tablespoonful of brandy.
Mode - Put the milk into a lined saucepan with the sugar and whichever of the above flavourings may be preferred, the lemon rind flavours custards most deliciously, and let the milk steep by the side of the fire until it is well flavoured. Bring it to the point of boiling then strain it into a basin, whisk the eggs well and when the milk has cooled a little, stir in the eggs and strain this mixture into a jug. Place this jug in a saucepan of boiling water over the fire keep stirring the custard one way until it thickens, but on no account allow it to reach the boiling point, as it will instantly curdle and be full of lumps. Take it off the fire, stir in the brandy and when this is well mixed with the custard, pour it into glasses which should be rather more than three parts full, grate a little nutmeg over the top and the dish is ready for table To make custards look and eat better, ducks eggs should be used when obtainable, they add very much to the flavour and richness and so many are not required as of the ordinary eggs, 4 ducks eggs to the pint of milk making a delicious custard. When desired extremely rich and good cream should be substituted for the milk and double the quantity of eggs used to those mentioned, omitting the whites.
Time - A hour to infuse the lemon rind about l8 minutes to stir the custard. Average cost fid Sufficient to fill 8 custard glasses Seasonable at any time."
I used a double boiler instead of a jug. I used vanilla and omitted the brandy. The image from the book reminded me of my punch glasses, so I used them.
I put the (2 cups) milk in a saucepan with the sugar and vanilla and brought it to a boil. Once the sugar dissolved, I let it cool while I mixed the eggs. I used 8 egg yolks and 3 strained whites instead of 5 eggs because I'm not very good at keeping the whites from cooking, and making the custard chunky. I mixed a little of the milk in with the beaten eggs and then added it to the pot. I heated and stirred it in a double boiler until it became firm. It filled 7 small glasses, topped with nutmeg. Ours were served chilled since I made them ahead of time.
We liked these very much!
My custards served in punch cups