1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups half-and-half or milk
1 egg or 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla or rum extract
Mix sugar, flour and salt in saucepan. Stir in half-and-half or milk. Cook over low heat, stirring until it boils. Boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Slowly stir half the hot mixture into beaten egg; blend into hot mixture in saucepan; bring to boil. Stir in butter and extract. Cool.
Almond Cream Filling
Use part almond extract. Add about 1/2 cup toasted chopped blanched almonds when cool.
Date or Fig Cream Filling
Fold in about 1/2 cup each cut-up dates or figs and toasted nuts.