I love Creme Brulee. It’s my favorite non-chocolate dessert.
I’ve had a lot of Creme Brulee in my life. I have ordered it in restaurants and had it made by friends. I’ve even made it a few times. Well, maybe a bit more than a few times. None have been blog-worthy until now.
I should have known that Ina Garten would have a winning recipe. And yes, I have tweaked her recipe just a little to make this totally yummy dessert. It was also worthy as the perfect ending to our Christmas dinner. And now, without further ado…the recipe:
adapted from Ina Garten, Barefoot in Paris, 2004, Clarkson Potter/Publishers
2 Large eggs
6 Large egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar plus 1 teaspoon for each ramekin
3 cups heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier (the secret ingredient)
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Start a tea kettle with some boiling water. Or, use a large saucepan to boil some water. Set aside to use later.
Heat the cream until it is very hot to the touch but not boiling. This can be done in the microwave safe bowl in the microwave for a minute or two or in a saucepan on medium heat. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the eggs and egg yolks with the 1/2 cup of sugar on low speed, just until combined.
With the mixer on low speed, very slowly add the hot cream to the egg/sugar mixture. When added, pour through a sieve to remove any of the slimy bits and add then add the vanilla and Grand Marnier to the sieved mixture. Give it a good stir to incorporate the flavorings. Pour into small ramekins to 1/4 of an inch from the top. I used a variety of sizes and it worked out just fine. (less calories per serving when they are smaller like these)
Place the ramekins in a baking dish or a jelly roll pan already placed on the oven rack and pour or ladle boiling water into the baking dish until the water is about halfway up the ramekin. Bake for 35 minutes or until the custards are set when gently shaken. I found 35 minutes did it just right. When done baking, remove the ramekins from the water bath. They will be hot so be very careful. Cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until firm.
I put the ramekins back on the baking sheet and then covered it with plastic wrap just to avoid transfer of flavors from the fridge. It was holiday time and the Creme Brulee had to share space with sausage, salami, cheeses, olives, and chicken.
To serve, sprinkle about a teaspoon of granulated sugar evenly on the top of each ramekin. Heat the sugar with a blowtorch until the sugar is caramelized evenly. Let sit at room temperature a few minutes to let the sugar harden. Serve. Makes six 8 ounce ramekins or more if using smaller ramekins, which I did.
Note: Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Can be made a day or two in advance. Only caramelize the sugar on the ones you will be serving immediately. Otherwise, you will get gooey tops if you try to refrigerate the.ones with the sugar on top.
Drop me a comment if you try this recipe. I’d love to hear from you…..I’d love to hear from you even if you didn’t try the recipe.