Creme Brulee

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Until Father's Day, I had not made creme brulee in at least a year in a half. That's a long time considering everyone loves it and I used to make it most times we had guests for dinner. The idea of turning creme brulee vegan was always too daunting, so I never tried.
So when my grandparents were in town for Fathers Day, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to bust out the ramekins and torch.
Not much else to say in this post as 1. you just have to follow the recipe, be patient and then die and go to heaven. 2. I am re-reading Harry Potter this summer and I spend all my free time doing that, so I'd like to stop typing and get back to that, thank you very much. (I'm on the 3rd one- I can't help myself.)
I did modify this from an Alton Brown recipe- I tried to go easy on the heavy cream thing and I think the modification turned out splendid. Also, if you don't have real vanilla beans because they are disgustingly expensive and you aren't blessed with a bunch of cheap ones from Mexico, just use vanilla extract.

The creme brulee team.

Creme Brulee: adapted from Alton Brown

1 quart fat free half and half
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1 cup sugar, divided
6 large egg yolks

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Place the cream, vanilla bean and its pulp into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.

Remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean and reserve for another use (like sticking it in a bowl of white sugar and making vanilla sugar- seriously good).

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup sugar and the egg yolks until well blended and it just starts to lighten in color.

Add the cream a little at a time, stirring continually. Pour the liquid into 6 (7 to 8-ounce) ramekins. Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour some water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins.

Bake just until the creme brulee is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

Remove the creme brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the remaining 1/2 cup vanilla sugar equally among the 6 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the creme brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Look at that delicious sugar top...mmm.


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