I LOVE Creme Brulee. When I saw that Jen had picked this as her recipe, I was so excited.
I have made creme brulee many times, but I've never made it with a vanilla bean, or with the burned sugar topping. I know. Criminal. So, first time. You're here to witness...
Combine 1/2 the cream, sugar, vanilla bean (with seeds), and salt in a saucepan. Heat to dissolve the sugar. Then remove from heat, cover, and let steep, (sit for 15 minutes). Then add the rest of the cream.
Here come the eggs. Ten. 10. So many. So worth it. We use just the yolks. There's my handy, albiet slightly broken, egg separator. Pretty fun, eh?
Ten. 10 yolks. There they are.
Slowly whisking the cream into the yolks.
Straining the custard. (I had never done this in my previous Creme Brulee makings. Smart. Good thing to do... otherwise, there are times that you get small bits of cooked egg? while eating the Creme Brulee. I would recommend this step.)
Boil some water.
Pour the custard into the ramekins, which are sitting on top of a kitchen towel, in a 9x13" pan. The boiling water is then poured into the pan, around the ramekins. The water helps to cook the custard evenly.
Cook until just set. And allow to cool, then cover and refrigerate until cold.
Turbinado sugar (or Sugar in the Raw).
The top of the Creme Brulee has to be blotted slightly to be sure that it's completely dry. Then the sugar is sprinkled lightly on top.
Here comes the torch. Caramelize the sugar.
Isn't that cool? I mean, hot? It was so fun. I felt so chef-like.
There it is.
The book said, "A perfect creme brulee should be decadently rich and topped with a brittle, paper-thin sheet of burnt sugar."
So check out that paper-thin sheet of burnt sugar. It worked. And man was it grand!
If you've never made creme brulee, do it. Give it a try. It's not hard. SO worth it. Go to Jen's blog for the full recipe. Mmmm.