Sunday, April 11, 2010

Creme Brulee

I think Spring is really here, my Big Green Egg is more of a yellowish green thanks to a layer of pollen. Yesterday afternoon, I heard an affirmation that winter is over. It was the "chsk-chsk-chsk-chsk - ta-ta-ta-ta-ta" of a pulsating lawn sprinkler.

Another sound I love to hear is the crunch of a spoon breaking through the sugary top of a creme brulee. I don't don't eat a lot of desserts but the other day Mary at Deep South Dishes posted how to make this strawberry garnish. Driscoll strawberries arrived this week and our mint is growing fast so I thought I'd make the garnish. Now all I needed was a dessert to go under the garnish and creme brulee seemed the perfect choice.

Creme Brulee
Source: Rouxbe Online Cooking School (click link for their video recipe)

2 cups heavy cream
1 each vanilla bean
2 tsp orange liqueur (may substitute orange zest)
6 each egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 325f.

Heat the cream over medium low heat. Add the liqueur. Slice the vanilla bean open and scrape out the contents with the back of the knife blade.

Add the vanilla to the pot and whisk in to mix. Bring mix to a simmer for one minute. Strain through a sieve into a large measuring cup.

Set up your ramekins or dishes in a 13 x 9 casserole dish for a bain marie. If you really like the custard part of creme brulee and less crust, use a ramekin. If you are like me and prefer more crusty sugar goodness, use a shallower but wider dish the the two on the left.

Put this whole set up into the middle rack of your oven and CAREFULLY pour almost boiling water into the casserole. Do NOT get any in your dishes. Fill until the water level is at least 1/2 way up the sides.

Cook for 20-25 minutes. They are done when you gently shake a ramekin with tongs and only get a slight, uniform wiggle (go back up top and click on the video link for a good example). This time it took me 25 minutes. Last time it was 45 minutes, but my water in the bain marie was only hot tap water. Put on a cooling rack for a few minutes and then store in a refrigerator for 4 or more hours.

To serve, put a liberal coating of sugar on top of the custard and brown with a gas torch.

Let it harden for 2-3 minutes, garnish and serve.

Crunch.

26 comments:

  1. This looks great! I used to love creme brulee way back when. It's been a long time since I've tried it, though.

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  2. Your creme brulee looks fantastic! I love the garnish too :)

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  3. Boy wouldn't I love to dig into one of those and love your strawberry fans! That pollen has been fierce down here too - my red mustang is orange! No sprinklers going yet since we had a bit of rain couple days ago, but the spring shedding oaks means oak leaf burning around here & there's been plenty of that to clog up one's sinuses along with the pollen. Glad to see some things greening up though. Hope you're having a nice Sunday. Thanks for the shout out!

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  4. My mouth is watering & I can't seem to stop saying "Wow, Chris!" This is over-the-top fabulous from the photos & instruction to the finished product - love that you did this around the garnish. Great post!

    Our pollen comes a bit later and it's heinous for a couple of weeks - I have to wear a mask when I mow around the spruce trees and I end up looking like a bumble bee.

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  5. This is Bev's absolute favorite dessert and I can't imagine she won't be making it after seeing this. The last picture looks awesome and I think the local strawberry farm my open soon. If you're a fan of the really good berries, maybe you guys could come over, pick a few quarts and have lunch at Almost Heaven South - you bring the dessert :).

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  6. I need a new torch, I got some cheap one that won't do anything!

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  7. I've never had creme brulee with orange liqueur before...I love it:D The flavor would be amazing!

    I really need to get my hands on one of those kitchen torches. Adding it to my ever growing wish list!

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  8. a truly beautiful thing. I don't eat a lot of desserts either, but I rarely miss this when out and it is an option...

    love the detailed photo instructions

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  9. Oh Yes Please! And you can hold the garnish - as pretty as it is - I'll take my brulee unadulterated! Thanks for the info about Google Alerts - I had no idea how to do that! xo, Nan

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  10. Looks great. I love creme brulee - I've never made it at home. Looks easy enough - I'll have to go for it.

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  11. The garnish is indeed fabulous. I am just in the door from a weekend in Monterey at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine Festival. I had so much fantastic and rich food that when I got to the Driscoll Berries Platform it was such a pleasure to pick up a bowl of simply adorned perfect berries! Such a simple taste, yet a highlight for me! Well that and the Pork Belly from Redd! Oh yeah and the Spicy Crab and Scallop Ceviche from Marinus and... well you get the idea! GREG

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  12. I haven't done this one in a while myself. It's funny sometime you forget about what you did in the past when your so focused on the future.

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  13. Nice use of tools and hardware, Chris!

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  14. This creme brulee looks perfect and absolutely heavenly!

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  15. This is definitely on my "gonna make this someday" list. Yours looks delicious!

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  16. I hope you don't mind making it again...I want some! LOL it looks delicious Chris :)

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  17. Gorgeous! I haven't been able to convince my girlfriend to let me in the apartment with a blowtorch, so I haven't been able to make creme brulee yet. Heh.

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  18. I know some folks think creme brulee is a bit of a cliche dessert but it really is my favorite. And I do have a torch. No reason not to make this!

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  19. You'd never know desserts wasn't your thing by looking at this! Great job :-)

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  20. Creme brulee is always my dessert of choice. I could eat it every day if I didn't think my thighs would berate me for it. This looks absolutely fantastic!

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  21. This is my all time very favorite dessert. Now I am craving some creme brulee.

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  22. So artsy with the garnish. BTW love the addition of orange liqueur to the creme brulee. Totally going to try this out now that I have dusted off my torch for the season.

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  23. For christmas I got a little mini torch for creme brulee and have yet to try it. Maybe that will be my little project this weekend. thanks!

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