Crème Brulee

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Crème Brulee

Postby cranky » Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:42 am

I never posted in this category before so I thought it was time.

My wife loves crème brulee so many years ago I decided to learn how to make it. After reading many recipes and much experimenting this is the final recipe I came up with. I only make this a couple times a year so I tend to forget it and have to go back and look it up whenever I make it but over the years I failed to update the recipe. I made this yesterday and was updating just sitting here updating the recipe so I wouldn't forget anything next time and figured I would go ahead and share. So here is how I make it.


Crème Brulee

1 QUART HEAVY CREAM ( I use a good thick organic heavy cream but this recipe will work with any cream even light whipping cream)
1 TABLESPOON GOOD MADAGASCAR BOURBON VANILLA EXTRACT
1/2 CUP SUGAR
Little bit grated NUTMEG (optional)
12 LARGE EGG YOLKS separated from the whites
HOT WATER AS NEEDED
NOTE : DO NOT USE CONVECTION WHEN COOKING!!!


Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. DO NOT USE CONVECTION!!!

Place the cream into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. When the cream begins to boil you have about half a second to get it off the heat before it foams up and overflows all over the stove, so don’t turn your back on it. When it boils remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes.

Whisk together 1/2 cup sugar and the 12 egg yolks, I use a Kitchen Aid mixer set to 3 for this, mix until well blended but not too airy and it just starts to lighten in color.

After the cream rests for 15 minutes add it to the egg/sugar mixture by adding a little cream very slowly while the mixer is mixing them to temper the mixture so you don't scramble the eggs. Continue adding the cream slowly until the egg mixture is it up to temperature then you can add the cream faster, stirring continually until all the cream has been added. Don’t get too carried away with mixing or you will incorporate too much air and the texture will be all wrong.

Add the vanilla extract at the very end of mixing and gently whisk it in

Once fully incorporated ladle or pour the liquid into ramekins. I usually use 8 ramekins for this but it depends on the size you use.

Use a spoon or small ladle to scoop any foam off the top.

I like to grate a little nutmeg on top at this point but it is totally optional.

One very important thing to note is DO NOT use convection when cooking these. The convection feature will tend to prevent the steam from forming and cause the tops to burn before the rest is done and causing problems with the texture.

Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake just until the crème brulee is set, but still wobbles in the center when jiggled, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. 40 minutes is usually perfect for me. The top may be slightly brown.

Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days, I find that they are best after at least 12Hr in the refrigerator.

If you wish to caramelize the top, remove the crème brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. One of the best methods for caramelizing the tops is to make a caramel in a pot, let it cool (take it out of the pot before it cools) then grind it up. Sprinkle the ground caramel on top in an even layer then place under a broiler for a few seconds. The ground caramel will remelt forming a nice even layer of caramel. The more common way is to spread spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the crème brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving. Fortunately for me my wife doesn't like caramelized sugar on her crème brulee so I don't have to go through all the trouble.

One thing I like to do sometimes is make a crust out of short bread cookies, melt chocolate and spread a layer of chocolate on top of the cookie crust to act as a barrier between the custard and crust, then add the custard and bake as above.
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Re: Crème Brulee

Postby Bushman » Mon Oct 24, 2016 10:07 am

This is very similar to my wife's recipe however she said she has never heard of bourbon vanilla extract. Do you buy this at a local grocery store?
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Re: Crème Brulee

Postby dieselduo » Mon Oct 24, 2016 11:48 am

Bourbon vanilla extract is the name for all vanilla grown in Madagascar and other islands in the Indian Ocean
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Re: Crème Brulee

Postby Deerhunter » Mon Oct 24, 2016 11:53 am

I LOVE Crème Brulee and will be trying to make this once I buy those nice little dishes.
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Re: Crème Brulee

Postby cranky » Mon Oct 24, 2016 4:01 pm

I get my vanilla extract from Home Goods, they always have a good one at a reasonable price. The last time I bought some it was $13 for 8oz but it is often as low as $8 or $9. In truth any vanilla extract will work or even cooking the cream with a vanilla bean in it but I personally find my best results are with a good quality extract. Currently I'm using this one
https://www.amazon.com/Sonoma-Syrup-Van ... up+vanilla although I think that's a ridiculous price and is the same one I paid $13 for.

One other thing I meant to mention is that you can use as little as 9 egg yolks but I like the results I get from 12. I also use organic eggs and cream but this can be a little more tricky than the cheap eggs and cream because the organic cream is very thick and tends to aerate more easily.

Deerhunter wrote:I LOVE Crème Brulee and will be trying to make this once I buy those nice little dishes.

I personally prefer a nice deep ramekin. I used to use ramekins that could hold 1.5 cups but have switched to smaller 3/4 cup because my wife could only eat about half of one in the bigger ramekins.
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Re: Crème Brulee

Postby apdb » Tue Oct 25, 2016 5:25 am

A tip we used at the restaurant to avoid scorching the cream... Pour your refrigerated cream into your heavy bottom pot. When its settled, carefully add your sugar in a way that it settles to the bottom AND DON't Stir. This creates a layer of sugar at the bottom of the pot which helps to keep the milk from burning. When you turn on the heat, shut out the world, don't walk away, ignore everything but your pot. A hard lesson to learn for a young apprentice but after cleaning many a scorched cream pot and milk covered stovetop, I finally learned.
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