I’m not sure if it’s the hard/crispy/crunchy top, or if it’s the smooth/creamy/dreamy custard under that cracking hard shell, but I just can’t seem to get enough of this classic dessert.
Crème Brûlée just means “Burnt” Cream. And it’s such a special dessert that there are countries fighting to claim its origin. Really!! France, England, Spain all have a version of this decedent dessert. France released the first printed version of the recipe, in a 1691 cookbook. England claims that it was served at The Trinity College in 1630. Spain has their version recorded in the 18th century, which has cinnamon and lemon or orange zest in the topping.
Bottom line, no matter what the origin they all mean the same thing…. creamy custard with a hard caramelized topping of sugar. All I care about it how amazing this dessert is and how easy it is to make. You can even make this a day ahead!
- 4 yolks and one whole egg
- 3 cups of heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sugar, plus more for topping
- 1 tbs vanilla extract
- 1 tbs orange liquor
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees
- In a bowl mix the egg, egg yolks and 1/2 cup sugar with an electric mixer (I used my hand mixer)
- Meanwhile, heat the cream on low heat, until it’s very hot and starting to create bubbles on the sides. DO NOT LET IT BOIL.
- Very slowly add the cream to the eggs while whisking, a little at a time making sure not the start cooking the eggs. Then add the vanilla and orange liquor.
- Pour the mixture into 8 oz ramekins until 3/4 way full.
- Place the ramekins in a baking dish and pour in boiling water, until it’s halfway up the sides of ramekins.
- Bake for 40 minutes, until the custards are set.
- Let the custards come to room temperature then refrigerate until firm.
- When ready to serve, sprinkle 1 tablespoon sugar on each ramekins. Using a kitchen blowtorch caramelize the sugar until brown.
- Let the sugar cool a bit (1-2 mins) until it hardens.
You can bake the custard 1 day before. Just sprinkle the top with sugar and brûlée it before serving.