Serves 6 - 8
Everyone always thinks his or her recipe for Crème Brulee is the best one, but mine really is. Cooking it at a low temperature makes it so creamy, you never want to stop eating it. This recipe is from my fabulous friend Sharon, who is a pastry chef.
She is gorgeous, creative, lots of fun, and very interesting. (Now, instead of making cakes, she makes hats!). And, of course, she is a wonderful cook. By the way, she only drinks sparkling wine, so you always get to drink champagne when you’re with her!
I make this in little white custard cups that Sharon and I bought together on The Bowery one day. They are deep like pots de crémes, only bigger with vertical flutes, not flat like little quiche dishes.
1 quart heavy cream
10 eggs yolks
⅔ cups sugar
1 vanilla bean
⅓ cup Amaretto (almond flavor) or Frangelico (hazelnut flavor) (I use Frangelico)
Mix 2/3 cup sugar with the egg yolks. Bring cream with vanilla bean in it just to the boil. Pour cream s-l-o-w-l-y into the yolk/sugar mixture, stirring constantly. Pour in the Amaretto or Frangelico (my choice).
Strain everything through a fine sieve into a bowl; then pour into custard cups, leaving enough room at the top for the sugar shell. Bake at 250 degrees for 2 hours in a bain-marie (I know YOU know this, but just in case someone doesn't, this means to arrange the cups in a baking dish, and add enough warm water to the baking dish to reach halfway up the sides of the custard cups ).
When the custards are done, you can sprinkle the top with sifted light brown sugar, and broil to caramelize the top, or use a torch; however, Sharon NEVER uses a torch (or the broiler for that matter) because she thinks it blisters the delicate custard underneath. Rather, she caramelizes suger in a pan and pours it over the tops. It hardens to a thick shiny disk that you have to really poke your spoon at to get through . Chill, and get ready to swoooooon.