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Basic Creme Brulee

(recipe, Deanna Dudney)


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Ingredients

  1. 2 cups whipping cream
  2. ½ cup sugar
  3. ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  4. 5 egg yolks

Steps

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Combine cream, half the sugar and vanilla in a heavy saucepan and scald (bring just to a boil). Remove from heat.
  3. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks with the rest of the sugar until slightly thickened. Slowly whisk a small amount of the cream mixture iinto the egg yolks (this will warm the egg yolks and prevent them from curdling).
  4. When the yolks have warmed up , whisk the yolk mixture back into the rest of the cream.
  5. Strain this cream mixture into four 6 oz ovenproof ramekins. Put the ramekins into an ovenproof pan and put it in the oven.
  6. Fill the pan ⅓ to ½ full of water. Bake until barely set, about 40 to 45 minutes (when gently shaken, the custard should jiggle but not be too loose).
  7. Remove ramekins from water bath, wipe bottoms and chill in refrigerator several hours to overnight.
  8. To serve: spread an even layer of sugar on each crreme brulee and melt the sugar carrefully with a small propane torch. Allow sugar to harden for a few minutes, then serve.
  9. To use a broiler instead of a torch, place ramekins in a large pan surrounded by ice (this keeps the custard from overcooking). Broil as close as possible to the heat source until the sugar melts and caramelizes, about 2 to 3 minutes. Once the sugar has hardened serve immediately.