Crème Brûlée is in my opinion, the best dessert in the world. Lucky me, the first time I had this wonderful delight was at my first visit to Paris in France many years ago (years before Facebook and Instagram). I can´t remember the name of the restaurant any more, but I was walking "down" Champs-Élysées from the Arc de Triomphe and had a yummy lunch with Crème Brûlée for dessert. This was my Crème Brûlée moment. The rich, velvety custard, topped with a sugary top, that is often melted with a torch that will give you this sugary crackling....
Oh La La...
After my first Crème Brûlée moment, I love and enjoy every time I can have this dessert. It is very rich (and fatty), so you don´t need a big bowl, I think you will be sick then.
I prefer the "original" Crème Brûlée, custard with vanilla flavour. But there is so many variations out there, so try all you like and maybe you too will find a favourite.
There are also different recipes of this "plain" vanilla custard, so I give you one of my favourites below. You can make one "big" Crème Brûlée, but I suggest that you buy some ramekins, unless you already have some in your cupboard. In my household, it is just me and my husband on a daily basis, so I make this dessert mostly on weekends. I have like six to eight ramekins with this delightful dessert, perfect for the two of us or when friends/family visit.
Easy Crème Brûlée recipe from Sally´s Baking Addiction:
You will need these things: Heavy cream, sugar, egg yolks (I recommend room temperature on the eggs), maybe a little salt, vanilla (pods or extract). If you want additional flavour, like coffe, cinnamon, orange etc. you pick what you like and prefer. I also like to strain the mixture before pouring it into the ramekins, but you don´t have to.
5 large egg yolks
3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar, divided
3 cups (720ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream*
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (optional but recommended)*
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract*
Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C).
Whisk the egg yolks and 1/2 cup (100g) of granulated sugar together. Set aside. (At this point or before you temper the egg yolks in the next step, bring a small kettle or pot of water to a boil. You’ll need hot water to pour into the baking sheet for the water bath.)
Heat the heavy cream and salt together in a medium saucepan over medium heat. As soon as it begins to simmer, remove from heat. Stir in the vanilla extract. Remove about 1/2 cup of warm heavy cream and, in a slow and steady stream, whisk into the egg yolks. Keep those egg yolks moving so they don’t scramble. In a slow and steady stream, pour and whisk the egg yolk mixture into the warm heavy cream.
Place ramekins in a large baking pan. If you don’t have 1 pan large enough, bake them in a couple pans. Divide custard between each ramekin, filling to the top. Carefully fill the pan with about a 1/2 inch of the hot water. The baking pan will be hot so use an oven mitt to carefully transfer the pan to the oven.
Bake until the edges are set and centers are a little jiggly. The time depends on the depth of your ramekins. My ramekins are 1-inch and the custard takes 35 minutes. Begin checking them at 30 minutes. For a more accurate sign, they’re done when an instant read thermometer registers 170°F (77°C).
Remove pan from the oven and, using an oven mitt, remove the ramekins from the pan. Place on a wire rack to cool for at least 1 hour. Place in the refrigerator, loosely covered, and chill for at least 4 hours and up to 2 days before topping.
Using the remaining granulated sugar, sprinkle a thin layer all over the surface of the chilled custards. Caramelize the sugar with a kitchen torch and serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 1 hour before serving. (Caramelized topping is best enjoyed right away.)
Crème Brûlée is also perfect served with berries if you like that. It can be strawberries, rasberries or blue berries. Serve with banana cut in slices or peaches. You just try whatever you think taste good. And if you make Crème Brûlée in other falvours, there may be other fruit or chocolate to add. There are books with only Crème Brûlée recipes or Google it, there is almost no limit of what you can make.
So when are you going to have your Crème Brûlée moment?