Masala chai crème brûlée

Recipes taken from Gun­pow­der by Harneet Baweja, Dev­ina Seth and Nir­mal Save (Kyle Books, £25)

Red - - Living -

Chai goes so well in dessert – you could also add white choco­late to the mix in place of some of the sugar.

Makes 4-6

Prepa­ra­tion time: 25 min­utes, plus chill­ing

Cook­ing time: 35 min­utes

3 cloves

5 green car­damom pods 1 cin­na­mon stick or 1tsp ground cin­na­mon

400ml dou­ble cream

100ml full-fat milk

2 In­dian masala chai tea bags 1/2tsp ground gin­ger

80g caster sugar, plus 4tbsp for the tops

5 large egg yolks

1/2tsp vanilla ex­tract

To serve

Bis­cuits, cook­ies or short­bread (op­tional)

1 Pre­heat the oven to 160°C

(140° fan) mark 3.

2 Place the cloves, car­damom and cin­na­mon in a spice or cof­fee grinder or pes­tle and mor­tar and grind to a fine pow­der.

3 Pour the cream and milk into a large saucepan. Add the tea bags, ground whole spices and gin­ger and stir to mix well. Place the saucepan over a medium heat and bring al­most to the boil, then re­duce the heat and sim­mer for 5min. Set aside to in­fuse fur­ther for 10min, then strain the mix­ture through a sieve or muslin cloth.

4 In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, egg yolks and vanilla un­til light and creamy. Slowly pour the strained cream into the egg mix­ture, whisk­ing con­tin­u­ously, then di­vide the mix­ture be­tween 4-6 small ramekins.

5 Place the ramekins in a roast­ing tray and pour enough boil­ing wa­ter into the tray to reach half­way up the sides of the ramekins. Place the tray on the mid­dle shelf of the oven and bake for 30min un­til just set, but with a slight wob­ble.

6 Set aside to cool to room tem­per­a­ture be­fore chill­ing in the fridge for a fi­nal set.

7 To fin­ish, sprin­kle enough sugar on the top of each crème brûlée to fully cover the sur­face of the set cream. Caramelise with ei­ther a kitchen blow­torch or un­der a very hot oven grill. Serve straight away or re­turn to the re­frig­er­a­tor un­til ready to eat. Serve with your choice of bis­cuits, cook­ies or short­bread, if you like.

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