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Creme Brulee --NEW
Recipe: Creme Brulee --NEW
The creme brulee recipe I'm going to offer you is the classic version. I've become a creme brulee aficionado. I've eaten several versions, made several versions and had all level of experiences. I've had several bad ones in restaurants. Oftentimes they leave the creme brulee in the refrigerator from day to day and it gets rubbery. Many restaurants broil the sugar in advance and then put it in the refrigerator and it gets completely cold. One fabulous element of creme brulee is when it's cold in the middle but the crust is very warm; almost hot. The juxtaposition is what makes your eyes roll back in your head! So take my advice in this recipe and broil it just before your serve it, but let it cool just a bit so you don't scorch your mouth or the mouths of your guests!
One more easy hint: when I make even the classic creme brulee I usually put a secret in the bottom of the cups. I put in fresh berries, a tablespoon of jam or a mixture of both to give a sweet, extra surprise. Raspberries or blackberries are my favorites. This is also a grand dessert to serve when you have company but really need to have the dessert finished before guests arrive. All you have to do is broil the sugar crust on top while the coffee is brewing.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
8 egg yolks
1/3 cup of white sugar
2 cups of heavy cream
1 tsp of vanilla
¼ cup of white sugar for caramelizing the tops
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is thick, pale yellow. Add cream and vanilla and whisk until well blended. (You can also do this with your mixer on medium speed). Strain the mixture using a fine mesh strainer over a large bowl this will skim off any foam or bubbles.
Divide the mixture among 6 ramekins or custard cups. Place the ramekins in a water bath (You can use a 9 X 13 pan and fill it with 1 - 2 inches of water). Keep the water about 1/2 inch below the rim of the ramekins. I put the water in while the ramekins are sitting in the pan and the pan is on the oven rack with the oven door open. This way you can gently slide it into the oven without getting water sloshed into your ramekins. Go slowly and carefully! Bake for 50 - 60 minutes until set around the edges, but still loose in the center. Remove from the oven and leave in the water bath until they are cooled. Then take the cups out of the bath and put them in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
When you are ready to serve you'll sprinkle sugar (about two teaspoons per ramekin) over the top of the custard. Then set it under your broiler to melt and caramelize the sugar. It will become a golden brown. Keep an eye on them. This happens quickly sometimes.
Note: If you are putting "secret bits" in the bottom, put them in before you pour in the custard. Just a few berries or berries mixed with jam are great.
Enjoy. Cheers! Zola
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