Crème Brûlée is one of my all-time favorite desserts, and it was such a treat when my uncle made this over the weekend! This rich custard is normally served at room temperature and topped with its signature burnt sugar topping. To achieve this stark texture contrast of velvety custard and hard caramel, you will need to have a kitchen torch on hand.
For a variation of this recipe, let your imagination run wild and substitute the vanilla extract with Amaretto, Grand Marnier, orange extract, or coffee (just to name a few ideas).
Time: 50 minutes prep
Yield: 6 servings (of 7-8 oz. ramekins)
6 large egg yolks
1 quart heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 quarts hot water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar (topping)
1) Preheat oven to 325F.
2) In a saucepan, bring cream and vanilla extract to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
3) In a bowl, whisk 1/2 cup sugar and egg yolks until they are a pale yellow color.
4) Gradually pour milk into the mixture, while whisking. Strain the mixture through a sieve into another bowl.
5) Pour liquid into ramekins. Set ramekins into a roasting pan and pour hot water halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
6) Bake in oven for 45 minutes, or until the crème brûlée is set (but still has a slight jiggle).
7) Remove ramekins from raosting pan. Allow crème brûlée to cool, and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours (or overnight for best results).
8) Take out crème brûlée from refrigerator and sprinkle 1/2 cup of sugar equally on the tops of each serving.
9) Using a kitchen torch, melt the sugar until a hard, burnt top develops. Set aside for 5 minutes before serving.