Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie - Crème Brûlée

Crème brûlée. Just saying those words makes me happy. Cool, creamy custard hiding underneath a thin, crunchy coat of caramelized sugar. Yes, Mari of Mevrouw Cupcake chose the recipe that I (and most probably many others) had been wanting to make for such a long time. Tuesdays with Dorie members this week have been playing with fire and I for one can tell you, it sure won't be the last time!

This was the perfect excuse for me to get the kitchen gadget I had always wanted but had, until now, been able to tell myself I didn't really need it. A kitchen torch. And yes, I did get a cute little torch, especially made for the kitchen because I was just too much of a sissy to get a real one! Yes, I like to play with fire but it still kinda scares me, OK? OK. So, with my brand new torch in hand, I made the custards. Easy peasy. They baked a little longer than specified and the recipe made a little less than I thought but I'll tell you, once I had cooled my custrards, sprinkled them with sugar and fired up my torch, I couldn't care less about those little problems! I had so much fun, I could make these everyday! If I could get around the fact that they're made with heavy cream, sugar and lots of egg yolks, that is.

I tried 2 kinds of sugars for the caramel. Demerara sugar and regular granulated sugar. The demerara sugar makes for a nicer looking crust (it's the one I used for the pics in this post) but the granulated sugar makes a glossier and more caramel-like crust. It also has more crunch than the demerara sugar crust. And, I used a trick I read about somewhere (I don't remember where though...) to sprinkle a really thin coat of sugar on the custard, caramelize it and then sprinkle another thin coat of sugar onto the first one and caramelize it again. You get a slightly thicker crust but it doesn't get rock hard.

This dessert is quite impressive in a really easy sort of way. I like that! It was worth the new gadget, I'll certainly be using it more than I thought I might! Visit Mari for the recipe and check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see what the other pyromaniacs have been up to.
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48 comments:

Lori said...

that's a great tip, about the 2 levels of caramelized sugar! i'm bookmarking your post.

chocolatechic said...

I loved being able to play with fire.

What a great idea about the 2 layers of sugar.

If one is good, 2 must be better.

Isabelle said...

ma torche vient de la quincaillerie, super cadeau de mon chéri...le seul souci est que c'est assez encombrant ! lol ! il m'a acheté le kit "soudure". lol ! lol !...pas grave, j'ai de quoi brûler des crèmes pour au moins 5 ans !

Marthe said...

I agree with you: playing with fire is fun!! Especially when there's Crème Brûlée involved!

MacDuff said...

Oh man, your custards are perfect. They look like what mine should have looked like!!! Good idea with the sugars. They really look pro.

Peggy said...

I was afraid of the torch. You did a great job with it though! I'm so impressed.

Sarah said...

seeing that some were able to make such beautiful creme brulee's gives me hope that i can do it one day (too bad my first try was not very good). great job! and congrats on your new kitchen gadget!

Bria said...

Looks great! I wish I had a torch for this weeks recipe... would have made the whole process much easier! Good tip though- i'll keep that in mind for next time.

Manggy said...

Whoa, congratulations on a gorgeous, successful first time!! :)

Teanna said...

Ohhh, thanks for that tip about the sugar! I will have to try that next time! Your brulees look great!

vibi said...

Eille, penses-tu que j'suis pas tannée moi, d'être accueillie par la perfection-même, chaque fois que je viens ici!???
Pffff... tu me dégoûtes LyB! LOL
Ben... tu sais que je blague! hein? Même si la partie concernant la perfection est assez proche de la vérité!
BRAVO... encore une fois!

Christine said...

Oh playing with fire and food is so much fun! Great tip about the 2 levels of sugar I am going to have to remember that!

Mevrouw Cupcake said...

LyB, I'm so glad you had fun with your new blowtorch! I love buying new kitchen gadgets and given others an excuse to the do the same! ;-)

CB said...

LOL. I am the same way. I love my cute little kitchen torch that has the power of a cigarette but its enough fire power for me! If you find more torch recipes you'll have to let me know! I want to burn something again. HAHA. I have to try your double crystallized sugar level trick. More sugar isn't bad right? ;)
Clara @ iheartfood4thought

Engineer Baker said...

Fire is always fun to play with - glad you had a reason to go out and get a torch! They look wonderful, and thanks for the tips about the demerara vs reg sugar.

Em said...

Isn't it nice to "need" a new kitchen gadget? I love having my blowtorch! Nice job :)

Gretchen Noelle said...

I just love your dishes with perfect brulees in them. Great job!!!

Heather said...

mmm i love creme brulee! and i love the torch that you get to play with!! this looks lovely!

Rachel said...

Thanks for the tip on the two layers of sugar! I don't have a torch and so I sat this week out, but after reading all of the delicious looking posts, I think I'm going to have to get one and make this soon, and I will definitely be using your idea!

Sandie said...

Creme Brulee is my favorite dessert---I just love the contrast between the smooth, satiny custard and the crunchy sugar topping...a bit of heaven on Earth.

And tell me, is there nothing more intimidating than breaking in a culinary torch for the fist time? Luckily, after that, it becomes more of a power trip than fear inducing ;-)

rainbowbrown said...

Those look so good, and what a great tip about the sugar. I'll keep that one in my head.

SiHaN said...

i never thought about the two layers.. actually i fancied the slippery layers within more than the sugar crust on top. but that's still a great tip anyway!

Debbie said...

mmmmm....the two levels of sugar make for a very nice looking crust.

Sweet Charity said...

Yours look amazing- the topping is absolutely perfect!

pinkstripes said...

I like the see-through dishes

kim said...

wow, beautiful job on the creme brulee!! thanks for the tips on the sugar/caramel, too :) and congrats on your hot new toy :)

Lifeisinthechaos said...

Wow! Looks wonderful!

Jess said...

Beautiful creme brulee...thanks for the 2-layer caramelizing tip!

Linda said...

The two layers of sugar is a great tip...besides, I love the caramelized top, so wouldn't mind having more! :)

Carol Peterman said...

I love your clear custard cups and thanks for the double layer of sugar tip.

Tracey said...

I didn't have a torch to try this recipe but your post makes me want to run out and get one to give it a shot! Great job!

Prudy said...

Two layers of sugar sound over top the top delicious! Sort of makes me wish I could make it again. I'm sure I will, and when I do, it's two layers of sugar for me!

Erin said...

Yours looks wonderful! The layers of caramelized sugar look so pretty and delicious!

Heather B said...

Great tip with the sugars! Your pictures look wonderful!

http://www.sundaydish.typepad.com said...

Your sugar crust looks perfect!
Ah, the bliss that comes with tap, tap, tapping through that crust to reach the creamy center! Well done!

Gigi said...

Great tips on creme brulee! And this is one of my favorite desserts of all time!

ostwestwind said...

Playing with fire may be fun, but not always.

I like your glass dishes.

Ulrike from Küchenlatein

Grace said...

i spy with my little eye some perfectly-executed creme brulee. bravo. and clearly, two layers of crust must be better than one. :)

suzanne said...

Oh my gosh...this looks so delicious!!!! My mouth is watering.

Love the title of your blog and your description. Just great. I'll be back!

DanielleBilton said...

I love your ramekins. nice job.

Rebecca said...

Ah, never heard of sprinkling, caramelizing, and doing it again to keep from getting that crazy-hard layer of sugar. Great tip!

Aimée said...

Any recipe that required a new kitchen toy/gadget is the best! I envy your cute, little torch--I have to borrow my husbands big industrial plumbing torch when I entertain and serve creme brule! Have I mentioned that tonka bean flavors a mean creme brule?

Maya said...

Great idea to use 2 types of sugar.

Shari@Whisk: a food blog said...

I love that you made this in a jar!

Ginny said...

Have you seen Ameile? When she says her favorite sound is the crust of the creme brulee breaking...Mine too! Delicious!

lemontartlet said...

It ain't fair. Creme burlee ain't on my list of desserts I like, and this post makes me want to make one! If there's wasted creme brulee in my kitchen, I'm blaming you.

Chocolate Shavings said...

The kitchen torch is the ultimate kitchen 'gadget.' You might only use it once or twice a month, but when do you use it, its still worth it!

Love the blog!

-jenn-

Helene said...

Oh my, I love crème brûlée so much. This is such a good picture.

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