Wednesday, October 27, 2010

White Chocolate Crème Brulee

Of all the crème brulee I've eaten in my lifetime, this by far is the best one I've had yet! I always try to order it for dessert if we are at a fancy restaurant (or on our cruises we tend to go on). If this dessert wasn't so absolutely horrifyingly unhealthy, I would eat it daily. For now, I'll just stick with once or twice a year. If you haven't ever made it, like me, and are intimidated .. don't be. This recipe was so easy and almost fool-proof. Plus, your friends will definitely be impressed when you whip these babies out of the fridge. If you haven't ever had crème brulee before, then you absolutely are missing out on something amazing!

White Chocolate Crème Brulee
Adapted from: Allrecipes
Serves: 6-8

4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1/3 cup granulated white sugar
2 cups heavy cream
4 oz White Chocolate baking bar, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
hot water
4 tsp pure cane sugar, for topping (or granulated white sugar is okay)

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the egg yolks and 1/3-cup sugar until smooth (fitted with the whisk attachment). Keep it on low speed while you complete the next steps.

In a medium saucepan on medium-high heat, bring the cream to a simmer/slight boil. Add the white chocolate pieces and whisk while you remove the pan from the heat. Whisk until the chocolate is completely incorporated. This may take some time because it can chunk at the bottom if you don't whisk long enough.

Add 2 Tablespoons of the white chocolate mixture into the stand mixer with the yolks in it. Keep the mixer on medium-low speed and continue to add the rest of the white chocolate mixture. Note: To make this step easier, pour the saucepan contents into a large measuring cup with a spout, to prevent spilling. Whisk until smooth and then add the vanilla.

Pour the mixture into broiler-proof ramekin cups (see picture above) and place into a 9x13 deep dish baking pan. Add enough hot water to cover about 1-1.5 inches up the sides of the ramekins. Bake in the oven for 50-55 minutes. The mixture will still seen liquidy when they are done but as they cool, they will solidify. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the hot water bath, then trasnfer to a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely and keep in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving. If you want to save them for a few days later by keeping in the fridge, that is okay too.

To serve, sprinkle the tops of the ramekins with the cane sugar and using a Crème Brulee torch, crystalize the sugar on top. If you don't have a kitchen torch (get one, they are cheap and easy to use), then you can use a broiler but then you have to put them back in the fridge for another 30 minutes to cool again and they don't usually taste as good.

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