Vanilla Creme Brulee by RickMach
2 cups heavy or light cream, or half-and-half (the first attempt that came out great, I used 1/4 cups skim milk & 1 3/4 cups heavy cream)
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (used 1 1/2 teaspoons)
1/8 teaspoon salt
5 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
- Heat oven to 325 degrees. In a saucepan, combine cream, vanilla bean, and salt and cook over low heat just until hot. Let sit for a few minutes then discard vanilla bean. (If using vanilla extract, add it now.)
- In a bowl, beat yolks and sugar together until light. Stir about a quarter of the cream into this mixture, then pour the sugar-egg mixture into cream and stir. Pour into 4 6-oz ramekins (note I used 11 or 12 when doubling recipe) and place ramekins in a baking dish; fill the dish with boiling water halfway up the sides of the dishes. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until centers are barely set. Cool completely on counter. Refrigerate for several hours and up to a couple of days.
- When ready, the crème brûlée should have a uniform jiggle in the middle; when you touch the center, it should spring back just a bit. If the sides hold firm but the center sloshes, they aren’t quite done yet.
- If they are set like Jell-O, they’ve overbaked, although they will still be delicious! Chill them, brûlée them, eat them, love them and celebrate your efforts. If they have overbaked to the point that they look risen in the center, toss them, start again, and celebrate your efforts!
- Let the custards cool in the water until you can safely pick up the ramekins by the rim with your fingers. This should take about 15 minutes, depending on how tender your fingers are.
- Once removed from the water bath, let each custard rest on the cooling rack for about 15 more minutes. Use a spoon to skim any bubbles off the top, then cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and store in the fridge. Chill for at least 4 hours, or up to 4 days, before serving.
- When ready to serve, top each custard with about a teaspoon of turbinado sugar in a thin layer and torch in a circular motion until burnt. Repeat with a 2nd thin layer of sugar. Put in the fridge for a few minutes and serve within 20 minutes.
- When ready to serve, remove the custards from the fridge. Sprinkle the surface of each custard evenly with about 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar. Rotate the custard as you sprinkle to make sure the sugar evenly coats the surface.
- Ignite your torch. Hold the flame about 4 inches from the surface of the sugar. Using a circular motion, move the flame across the surface. The sugar will at first begin to bead up, and then will eventually solidify into a hard sugar crust
- You want to make sure all the sugar granules have melted, and the sugar has at least a tint of caramel color. The longer you torch the surface, the darker it will become and the more bitter the sugar crust will be.
Other Info (pictures, nutrition, etc)