This week, Ian won his bazillionth star baker award and the bakers were faced with creme brûlées, windeltorte and a 3 tier baked cheesecake. Now, as much as I love cheesecake (and I do) there’s no way that I could get away with making a 3 tiered cheesecake at home just to say that I did the showstopper. The expense! The calories! And don’t hate me but….. I find merengue a bit joyless. So creme brûlée it was.
I like my creme brûlée like I like my marshmallows; blackened beyond recognition. How can you enjoy the sweetness if you don’t have to work through a layer of char first? Luckily, my family friend, Mary told me that she liked her creme that was as well, so full steam ahead on blackening it to smithereens.
Even though Mary insisted that the bakers use the grill to caramelise their sugar atop their custard, unfortunately, our oven doesn’t have a working grill setting, so I had to pull out the handy (and extremely exciting) kitchen torch.
- 1/2 cup of slivered almonds
- 2 cups of heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 6 egg yolks
- 1/3 cup of sugar (plus sugar for the tops of each ramekin for toasting)
- 1 teaspoon of almond extract
- Preheat your oven to 160 C (325 F).
- Gather your 6 ramekins and line the bottoms with your almonds. Over medium heat, whisk your cream and vanilla extract in a small pot. When tiny bubbles start forming around the edges of your pot, remove it immediately from the heat and allow your cream to cool to room temperature.
- When your cream has almost finished cooling, whisk your egg yolks until they are pale and creamy (about 2 minutes). Then beat in your sugar until it has completely evaporated (about 2 minutes again.)
- Slowly whisk in your cream a bit at a time into your egg mixture. Be careful not to over beat it. Once the cream is fully incorporated, stir in your almond extract. Divide the custard between your ramekins. Fill about 2/3rds of the way.
- Place your ramekins in a large dish (like a roasting dish). Then fill the pan up with water until the water level reaches the halfway point on your ramekins. Bake for 40-50 minutes until the tops are lightly goldened.
- Remove your ramekins from their water baths and set them aside to cool. Before serving, top each ramekin with a teaspoon of sugar and give it a quick run over with a kitchen torch or pop them quickly under the grill in your oven.
- Be careful with your bake - if you over bake your eggs will scramble.
I’m coming for you Ian….
As always, link up your bakes below!