Patisserie Made Simple: Creme Caramel

Creme Caramel
Laura Edwards
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Ingredients

For the caramel
1/2cup superfine sugar
For the custard
1 vanilla bean or 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
generous 1 1/2cups whole milk
3 1/2tablespoons whipping cream
4 extralarge eggs
scant 2/3cups superfine sugar

Instructions

  1. Put four 3 1/2-inch ramekins or six 3-inch dariole molds in a roasting pan ready by the stovetop. Preheat the oven to 300F. To make the caramel, put the sugar and 3 tablespoons of water in a small pan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Once the syrup is clear, stop stirring (as this can cause crystallization) and allow the sugar to caramelize. Once you have a caramel with a dark copper color, remove the pan from the heat and immediately divide among the prepared molds. (Be careful that the caramel doesn’t cook too far as it can burn easily.) Let sit while you make the custard.
  2. Cut the vanilla bean, if using, in half and scrape out the seeds. Put the seeds or vanilla bean paste in a medium pan and add the milk and cream. Heat gently over medium-low heat until the mixture is hot, but not boiling.
  3. Meanwhile, put the eggs and sugar in a bowl and beat together until pale. Once the milk mixture has come to temperature, remove the pan from the heat and slowly pour the mixture over the eggs, stirring constantly. Using a ladle, divide this custard equally between the prepared molds. Put the roasting pan in the oven and add enough cold water so that it reaches halfway up the sides of the molds. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the custards have set around the outside, but still have a wobble in the center.
  4. Carefully remove the roasting pan from the oven. Lift out the custards and put them onto a wire rack to cool. Cover each mold with plastic wrap then transfer them to the refrigerator to chill overnight. To serve, use a knife to gently loosen the custards from the molds. Put a serving plate on top of each mold, and invert it to turn the custards out. Make sure all the caramel drains from the mold onto the custard. The creme caramels will keep for up to three days stored in the refrigerator.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Patisserie Made Simple © 2015 by Edd Kimber, Kyle Books.