Several countries claim to have created the famous Creme Brulée desert including the British, French and the Spanish. Some even claim that this French recipe was developed in Trinity College, Cambridge. On the other hand, the earliest known reference to the desert was in the 1691 Massialot’s cookbook in France. There is a strong argument that this popular recipe was invented in France and is also correct to say that it is more popular in France than in any other country in the world. It is a standard dessert offered in most French restaurants. Whatever its origins Creme Brulée would not have achieved the classic French dessert status if it was not on the top restaurant menus in the world. Ingredients for Creme Brulée: Double cream -500ml or 18fl oz Vanilla pod -1 fat juicy Caster sugar – 100g or 4oz (extra for the topping) Egg yolks – 5 Whole eggs -2 Method of Preparation: 1. Pre-heat the oven to 115C°/250°F 2. Empty the cream into a thick bottom saucepan and chafe the seeds from the split vanilla pod into the cream. Cut the leftover pod into tiny pieces and place it in the mix also. Put in the sugar and bring the mix to boil. Turn off the heat and place a lid on top allowing the mix to infuse for 10 minutes or so. 3. Bring the blend to boiling point then place the eggs inside, whipping it briskly till it thickens as this shows that the eggs have started cooking. It should get smooth custard like evenness of double cream. If the texture is grainy, it suggests that the mixture is over-cooked and you need to start again. 4. Strain it through a fine strainer into a big jug. Pour this into 6 ramekins, just about two thirds full. 5. Put the ramekins in a big roasting tray and add enough water to reach the middle of their sides. Put on the centre shelf and allow it to bake for 40 to 60 minutes. Ensure that the custards are only about set and are still slightly shaky in the centre. 6. Take them out from the tray and cool at room temperature. 7. When you want to serve, dust a level teaspoon of caster sugar consistently on the facade of every Crème and use a blowtorch to caramelise it. Let them cool for a few minutes before serving this delicious French recipe.
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