Creme Brulee. It’s Ultimate.
Almost one year ago exactly while Sarah and I were still underground, so to speak, we had our first cooking sess together. Most of it revolved around dessert, mainly chocolate chip cookies although I do remember making one hell of a chicken noodle soup, and somehow that trend seems to have stuck.
I don’t usually like to make desserts, they usually require a recipe and careful attention to amounts and proper temperatures etc, and that area is more Sarah’s department. However, one night we teamed together and created something unreal. I had had the idea come to me when pondering what to do with this exquisite blueberry maple syrup I had been lucky enough to receive. Blueberry Maple Syrup Creme Brulee. (I capitalized everything there to emphasize how incredible each part of the dish is, not to be annoying) Since neither of us had made it and I’d only had it once it was a fun little project. We set out to make two kinds from the same base recipe, a plain vanilla and the experiement with the blueberry maple syrup. Our nights effort was worth it! Both were amazing but the blueberry maple syrup took the creme brulee to a new level. Unfortunately we used the last of it that night, although we did come away with a new favorite go-to dessert (or breakfast as well, in my case).
Over the past 9 months or so we’ve been practicing the art of the creme brulee, every now and again bashing out a handful of ramekins. We’ve had some that were better than others, some that were good, and thankfully only one half-batch that didn’t work. The best thing about creme brulee is it’s versatility – zest a lemon in the ramekin before adding the custard or grate some dark chocolate to coat the bottom of the dish and it takes on a whole new flavour development profile.
Most recently our goal was to actually photograph our creations so we could write about it! It happens too often that we will make something we love and forget to take a picture! So, without further rambling, a recipe so you can go play too.
with a few modifications we’ve made this recipe our own and is therefore a
Faraway Foodie Original!
4 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar – the maple syrup version is slightly different
1 vanilla bean
7 egg yolks
1. Preheat your oven to 300F and put a kettle on to boil
2. In a pot or saucepan or whatever on medium heat dump in your cream, the scraped out insides of the vanilla bean (slice lengthwise and scrape the gooey goodness from within) and the vanilla bean itself.
3. In a separate large bowl beat the egg yolks until they begin to lighten then gradually add the sugar.
4. Don’t boil the cream but bring it close. When bubbles begin to form around the edges of the pot it should be ready to go.
5. The fun part – temper your cream into the eggs. For confusing instructions and explanations on how to do this reference our ice cream recipe from the chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches.
6. Once the tempering is done, transfer your custard mixture back into the pot through a sieve to remove your vanilla bean and any scrambled egg that was accidentally cooked in cream.
7. We have been making three types at this point – lemon (lemon zest in the ramekin), chocolate (grated chocolate on the bottom of the ramekin) and plain vanilla just for the purpose of variety. All are fantastic.
8. In a roasting pan (or something that will hold all the ramekins and enough water to come at least half way up the sides of the ramekins) evenly space your dishes and ladle or pour in the custard. Don’t overfill – leave a little space at the top. At this point we usually move the whole pan to the oven and pour the hot water from the kettle in then. Saves walking around the kitchen trying not to slosh boiling water and custard all over the place.
9. Bake for about 40mins until there is only a small, stable jiggle in the centre of the dishes, sort of like bumping a table with one of those nasty jello molds on it.
10. When they’ve finished we place them on cooling racks for about 45mins, cover with cling film and then transfer to the fridge for a few hours (or as long as 3 days) until ready to serve.
11. To serve simply remove cling film, dump a couple tablespoons of sugar on top (if you have vanilla sugar its really nice) and brulee with a torch. Apparently you can use the broiler but I have no experience doing this. Once its bruleed, serve it. It won’t stay crunchy long.
Just a last note – if, when you take it out of the fridge to serve, there is a bit of condensation on the top of the custard try and blot this off. The sugar will absorb the water and make the brulee part exceedingly difficult. In the whole process this has been the hardest part, and the least consistent.
Mmm, breakfast. Enjoy.