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Flaming brilliant; Blowtorch your creme brulee and you'll combine fun with a delicious dessert to get all the family cooing.

Byline: JAMES MORTON'S BIB BAKE

Rather than bake, I will make my creme brulee on the stovetop.

This is because I find it infinitely more reliable and far quicker. It's really not a hard dessert to make and it can be done up to two days in advance. You don't need any of those silly ramekins to make it – I just use a few wee recycled tumblers I've got kicking around.

One thing that's fairly necessary for the traditional creme brulee is the blowtorch. I don't think this is asking too much, they're very cheap and widely available now. And once you've tried it, you'll love to do it again.

Some say you can use a grill instead but I've tried this and it just doesn't work. The heat isn't direct enough to cause the sugar to melt without ruining your custard.

If you really don't want one, you can make a caramel using 100g caster sugar and a tablespoon of water. Mix these together over a medium heat in a pan, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Stop stirring, then simmer until deep, golden brown. Pour this on top of your prepared custards just before serving.

How did your creme brulee turn out? Feedback, questions or favourite tips? Let James know @bakingjames

TOP TIPS

For an extra surprise, incorporate a little fruit in your creme brulee in the form of a few fresh berries at the bottom of the glass or even just some jam. It adds extra oomph!

CREME BRULEE

Makes six

INGREDIENTS

4 large egg yolks

400ml double cream

80g caster sugar, plus more for the top.

1 tsp high quality vanilla paste, or a vanilla pod (or 2 tsp extract)

A punnet of fresh berries (optional)

METHOD

1 First, look out your glasses or ramekins and, if you like, plop a few berries (or a spoon of jam) in the bottom of each as a wee surprise.

2 Into a pan, measure your cream. Place this on a medium heat. While that heats up, whisk together your yolks, sugar and vanilla in a small bowl.

3 When your cream is steaming, remove from the heat and add half of your cream to your eggy mix and quickly whisk together. Add this back to your pan, so that everything is now in the same pan.

4 Place this back on the heat and stir with a wooden spoon until it just starts to thicken. As soon as it does, remove and stir violently to stop any lumps forming. Pour into your glasses and then leave to cool. Leave at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before placing in the fridge to set. This will take at least an hour.

5 When ready to serve, scatter a teaspoon of caster sugar over each of your custards and blowtorch until a deep dark caramel. Alternatively, bring the blowtorch to your table and let everyone do their own!

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Aug 10, 2014
Words:489
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