Saturday, February 21, 2015

Dinner for Two (Part 3) - Heart-shaped Dessert

Originally I wasn't planning to make any dessert after our previous 2 courses of ravioli and chicken - thought we would finish the dinner with some cheese instead. But at the very last minute I changed my mind - after all it didn't sound right not having something sweet for Valentine's Day dinner so I squeezed an extra course in using simply ingredients I had in hand.

Creme Brulee is one of those easiest desserts I know how to do, and the best creation one could make using a simple combination of cream, sugar and egg yolks. To make it look less ordinary, this time I infused some tea into the custard before baking to alter the flavor. And to add on the cheesiness this time I even served it in a heart-shaped ramekin!

Recipe: Tea-infused Creme Brulee

Ingredients (serves 2)
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoon of caster sugar
  • 1 cup of whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of loose tea leaves (earl grey, English breakfast, or pretty much anything you would normally drink with milk)
1. Preheat oven to 160C/300F
2. Put whipping cream into a saucepan and place over medium heat until the cream start bubbling on the edge of the pan (around 80C). Do not boil. Remove from heat, put tea leaves into the cream and let steep for 5-8 minutes. Strain and remove tea leaves using a fine-mesh sieve.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk egg yolks and 1/4 cup of sugar until both were completely mixed and turn into a pale cream color. Slowly add hot cream mixture (now steeped with tea leaves) to the egg yolks. Add vanilla extract.
4. Place 2 shallow ramekins into a baking pan (large enough to fit 2 ramekins and at least half as tall). Fill baking pan with boiling water halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
5. Pour custard mixture into the ramekins (from three-quarter to near the rim) Transfer the baking pan into the oven, and bake until custard is slightly set, about 30-35 minutes.
6. Remove ramekins from the water bath to cool down slightly. Then let chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours and up to a couple of days.
7. To serve, remove ramekin from refrigerator, sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of each of the custard. (I used vanilla sugar) Caramelized the surface by holding a lit kitchen torch about 4 inches away and move in slow and circular motion until the sugar was slightly burnt. Serve immediately.

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