Requires: piping bag fitted with 1cm plain nozzle
To make the Crema Pasticciera (Italian custard), whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar in a large stainless-steel bowl for a few minutes until combined. Add the flour and approximately 100ml milk and whisk until creamy. Heat the remaining milk, vanilla bean seeds (or vanilla bean paste) and orange zest in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes or until just simmering (do not boil). Slowly whisk the hot milk into the egg mixture. If possible, it is easiest for one person to whisk while another person is pouring the hot milk into the mixture. Transfer the milk mixture to the saucepan. Whisk continuously over low-medium heat until the Crema Pasticciera is thickened. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Note: The Crema Pasticciera is ready when it coats the back of a spoon.
To make the crespelle dough, melt the butter, water and a pinch of salt in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat until foaming. Remove from the heat and add the flour at once. Return to medium heat and stir with a wooden spoon to form a smooth paste (a roux) that comes away from the side of the saucepan. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
Note: 00 is a powder-fine Italian type of flour. It is made from soft wheat varieties, and is frequently used in Italian desserts and pastas. 00 flour is available in most supermarkets, Italian food stores and gourmet delicatessens.
Add the eggs and egg yolk, one at a time to the roux, stirring constantly, until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the sugar and Strega liquor.
Prepare 6 small baking sheet squares approximately 15cm x 15cm in size. Spoon or pipe 4 tablespoons of the crespelle dough onto each square.
Add enough peanut oil to a large saucepan to reach a depth of 5cm. Heat to 160-165°C on a thermometer. Carefully transfer 2 crespelle from the baking paper squares into the oil. Discard the paper squares. Cook, turning occasionally, for 5-6 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Repeat with the remaining crespelle.
Place the Crema Pasticciera into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Place caster sugar onto a shallow tray. Toss crespelle in the sugar to coat. Make a small incision in the crespelle and pipe the Crema Pasticciera in the middle. Serve the Crespelle di San Giuseppe warm.
Note: The Crespelle di San Giuseppe should be well filled with beautiful Crema Pasticciera.