Time to get fancy! I have always loved creme brulee, and have always thought of it as a highly complex dish. Once I decided that I wanted to make it though, I realised that perhaps it wasn’t that difficult – rather the gas torch just makes it look extremely flash. The risk in its success lies in whether or not the custard mixture separates. I have made it a few times now, and have started experimenting with some different flavours. I definitely think it’s hard to go past creme brulee in it’s most pure form though – just good ol’ vanilla bean. If you want to make creme brulee, you should make it the night before you want to serve it so that it can set over night and all you have to worry about on the day is the sugar layer.
- 250 ml cream
- 1 vanilla pod
- 50 g caster sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 T caster sugar (you can also use muscovado sugar for the torching, but I found that caster sugar actually works better)
- [optional: 100 g white chocolate]
- 150°C bake.
- Pour cream into a small saucepan.
- Cut a slit along the length of the vanilla pod and scrape the seeds into the cream. Add the empty pod into the cream also. If you wanted to add chocolate to the brulee, now is the time that you should add it.
- Heat the cream to a temperature just below boiling point.
- Take the pan off the heat and leave it for 5 minutes to infuse the cream with the vanilla.
- Whisk the caster sugar and egg yolks together in a bowl and slowly whisk in the hot cream.
- Strain into jug.
- Sit 6 ramekins in a roasting tin filled halfway with hot water. Divide the mixture evenly across the ramekins.
- Bake for 25 minutes.
- Remove from oven, cool and then chill overnight in the fridge.
- Sprinkle with a think layer of caster (or muscovado) sugar. Blowtorch if possible, otherwise it is possible to just grill them so that the sugar caramelises.
- Refrigerate until the sugar is hard / until serving (at least 15 minutes).