Natilla (Sweet Custard)
In a bowl, mix the egg yolks with 1 cup of the milk. In another bowl, mix the cornstarch with another cup of milk, then add the sugar and the remaining milk. Strain the egg-yolk mixture through a fine strainer into the cornstarch mixture and stir to combine well.
In a heavy, medium-size saucepan over medium heat, cook the mixture, stirring constantly, until thickened, 20 minutes. Remove from heat, add the vanilla, and stir to blend.
Pour into a serving bowl, let cool to room temperature, cover, and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight. Before serving, dust with cinnamon.
If you are caramelizing the custard, cook the sugar in a small, heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly after it starts to bubble, until it is golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Drizzle it over the custard and refrigerate until the caramel sets. If you want a crisp sugar crust, pour the custard into an ovenproof mold, and refrigerate as directed above.
Before serving, sprinkle the sugar over the top, and place under a preheated broiler just until the sugar melts. Watch closely, as the sugar burns quickly.
Serve within 10 to 15 minutes.
Makes 6 to 8 servings