That burn­ing de­sire

Central and North Burnett Times - - EASY EATING -

Now is the per­fect time to in­dulge in the sin­fully rich French dessert known as creme brulee.

The lit­eral trans­la­tion of crème brulee is burnt cream; a mis­nomer, in fact, as it’s not the cream that is burned but the crunchy tof­fee top­ping.

To achieve the per­fect top­ping it’s worth in­vest­ing in a cook’s blow­torch. You can buy cheap brands but prob­a­bly a mid-range price tag will de­liver bet­ter ser­vice with­out break­ing the bud­get.

Creme brulee

Serves 2

IN­GRE­DI­ENTS: 250ml pure (un­thick­ened) cream 1⁄ cup 4 caster sugar plus one ta­ble­spoon ex­tra 1 tsp vanilla bean paste 2 large free-range egg yolks (re­serve whites for an­other recipe) fresh berries, to serve

METHOD: Pre­heat oven to 160 de­grees. Place two oven-proof ramekins in a small bak­ing dish. Place cream in a saucepan with 1⁄ cup sugar and add vanilla bean paste. 4

Heat over medium heat un­til bubbles ap­pear around the edge; do not al­low to boil. Us­ing a wire bal­loon whisk, whisk egg yolks in a jug. Still us­ing the whisk, beat the hot cream into the egg and sugar mix­ture un­til com­bined. Pour cus­tard into the ramekins, and use a spoon to skim off any froth.

Fill the bak­ing dish with enough hot wa­ter to come half­way up the ramekins and cook cus­tard at 160 de­grees for 30-35 min­utes. Cus­tards should still jig­gle a lit­tle.

Re­move from oven and care­fully lift each ramekin clear of the wa­ter with a spat­ula or egg slice. Cool for 10 min­utes on a wire rack then cover loosely with foil and re­frig­er­ate for at least an hour.

TO SERVE: Sit the ramekins in cold wa­ter in a bak­ing dish to pre­vent cur­dling. Sprin­kle the tops of the cus­tards with the re­main­ing caster sugar. Us­ing a cook’s blow­torch, heat the sugar, mov­ing the flame con­stantly, un­til it bubbles and turns a rich dark brown. Serve with fresh berries.

PHOTO: MAG­GIE COOPER

Spoil (and im­press) your beloved with a dreamy creme brulee.

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