1.02.2011

Creme Brulee

This dessert is a little tricky and does take some careful attention, but if you love creme brulee, it will be worth the effort! I personally really like creme brulee. It is an elegant little custard.

4 cups heavy whipping cream
10 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar, plus extra to caramelize top

1. Using a wire whisk or electric mixer, vigorously whisk egg yolks with granulated sugar in large bowl until mixture becomes light in color and sugar has dissolved a bit, set aside.
2. In a medium sized saucepan, combine heavy cream with vanilla. Bring the mixture to a simmer; when small bubbles have formed around the edges of the cream it is ready.
3. Gradually pour the cream mixture into the egg and sugar mixture, gently mix by hand. Chill and cover mixture with plastic wrap, pierced several times to release steam. Chill overnight.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place individual ramekins in a baking pan, large enough to hold 8 to 10 six-ounce custard cups and deep enough to allow the water for the to be added reaching at least halfway up the sides of the dishes.
5. Fill ramekins 3/4 full. Place pan in preheated oven and pour hot water into baking pan so water level reaches halfway up the sides of the ramekins. cover pan with a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil, sealing edges to retain steam. Cook 40 to 50 minutes or until custards are set. To determine if done, gently shake the individual ramekins; if center is still a bit liquid-like or wobbly return custards to oven and continue to cook, checking every 5 to 7 minutes, until it has just set with a small area in the center, the size of a quarter, still a bit loose.
6. Remove ramekins from baking pan and chill custard in refrigerator several hours.
7. To serve, put a thin layer of granulated sugar atop each custard. Using a blow torch, over a heat and flame proof surface (like a large cookie or baking sheet) caramelize sugar working from the outside in towards the the middle keeping the torch in constant motion. Sugar should be golden brown and caramelized never black. If burnt, let the sugar layer cool a few minutes than peel it away it with a paring knife an begin again. Alternately you could caramelize the sugar under a broiler, keeping a careful watch over it and rotating it to cook evenly.This takes about 2 minutes.

This dessert is a little tricky and does take some careful attention, but if you love creme brulee, it will be worth the effort! I personally really like creme brulee. It is an elegant little custard.

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