This is absolutely one of my favorite desserts...the creaminess of the custard, the crunch of the burnt sugar, deeee-lish. I discovered Ted Allen's recipe for Creme Brulee about 5 years ago and it has never once failed me...for those of you who are scared of making this decadent dessert, do not fret...if I can do it, so can you. I'm going to put step-by-step pictures for you! It is not difficult by any means and can be changed up very easily to suit your cravings. Another great thing about this is that it will keep in the fridge and tastes great chilled and then brulee'd just prior to serving, so you can make it a day or even two in advance if you wish!
Feel free to make your own and be sure to let me know how it turns out for you!!!
CREME BRULE WITH VANILLA AND THREE BERRIES
Recipe courtesy of Ted Allen, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, Bravo TV
Nothing says family fun like a blowtorch, particularly the junior size, pistol-grip version used in the kitchen. And being a utility grip by trade, we figured Andrew could be trusted with a pocket flamethrower (plus, he's handy enough, we thought it might come in handy on his next plumbing project). So, when he needed a decadent dessert to impress his date, the classic Crème Brule (literally, French for "burnt cream") seemed like just the ticket - updated, just a bit, with the addition of fresh berries.
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise - you can substitute vanilla extract or whatever flavoring you wish
6 tablespoons raspberry, blueberry, or blackberry spreadable fruit or jam - *I use sometimes/sometimes omit 5 large egg yolks
12 teaspoons sugar (try brown sugar if you have it)
About 1 and 1/2 cups mixed fresh raspberries, blackberries, blueberries *I use sometimes/sometimes omit
Preheat oven to 325°F. Spread a tablespoon of spreadable fruit in the bottom of each of six 3/4-cup ramekins, then press a mix of about six berries into the bottom of each ramekin (if necessary squash each berry a little so it doesn't protrude about the lip of the cup). *I omitted this part and made vanilla creme brulee* Place ramekins into two 13-by-9-by-2-inch baking pans.
Mix cream and 1/2 cup sugar in medium saucepan. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean, and add seeds and pod to cream mixture. Heat to medium and stir until mix is simmering; cover pan, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Remove vanilla seedpod and discard.
Whisk egg yolks in medium bowl. Slowly add hot cream mixture to eggs, and divide evenly among the ramekins, covering the tops of the berries. Add enough hot water to the baking dish to come halfway up the side of the ramekins, then very carefully place the pans in the oven, without spilling water into the cremes or onto the floor. Bake about 40 minutes until the custard is set. Remove ramekins with a spatula and let them cool.
Now, the fun part: Sprinkle two teaspoons of sugar evenly across the surface of each creme; then, fire up the blowtorch and melt the sugar evenly until it browns, using a constant, circular motion. Garnish with a sprinkles of berries and serve.