Chef Justin DiBianca’s Crème Brûlée – The Perfect Date Night Dessert

While we are all at home Chef Justin Di Bianca decided to share with you his Crème Brûlée recipe. It is the perfect date night recipe that can be made ahead of time. This recipe is easy and you probably have all the ingredients at home. Our Event Planner Natalie tried it at home to show you how easy it is.

The equipment you will need is

  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Flat bottom roasting pan or casserole dish
  • 4 ramekins (heat safe glass or ceramic bowls)

There are also only 7 ingredients for this recipe and 3 of them are optional.

  • 5 Egg Yolks
  • 2 cups of heavy cream
  • 1/2 Cup of granulated sugar (plus more for sprinkling)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract or the inside of a vanilla bean pod
  • Optional: Grand Marnier
  • Optional: Fresh Fruit (you could also defrost some frozen berries)
  • Optional: Fresh Mint

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Then combine egg yolks and sugar until smooth. Tip: Ovens can vary in temperature, use a inexpensive oven thermometer to make sure your oven is at the right temperature. Here is a link to one.
Step 1

2. Add cream and vanilla and gently stir to combine, taking care not to mix quickly so as not to introduce extra bubbles.

Step 2

3. Place un-filled ramekins in a baking or casserole dish and fill baking dish with hot water until about half-way up sides of ramekins. Pour egg mixture into ramekins. Tip: Put ramekins in the oven then add the water, you are less likely to spill the water.

Step 3

4. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, checking every 10 minutes after 30/35. When done, a knife inserted into the center of the egg mixture should come out mostly clean. If you jiggle the ramekins the mixture should be wobbly yet the filling not runny. Tip: It might take longer just keep checking them.

Step 4

5. Remove from baking dish and lay onto clean dish towel to dry or wire rack to set and cool. Allow to sit for 30 minutes so custard can set up. Tip: If you are making these ahead of time put them in the fridge at this step. They set better the longer the sit in the fridge.

6. Set oven to high broiler setting.

7. Sprinkle a thin, even layer of granulated sugar over the top of the cooked custard. Completely, but lightly, cover the custard with the sugar. 

Step 7

8. Place baking dish with ramekins under broiler (or use crème brûlée torch, if you’d prefer) for 5-7minutes, or until the sugar has melted and creates a golden brown, caramelized crust. You may want to rotate the pan half way through to promote even caramelizing. Tip: When broiling watch them while they are in the oven, they can go from perfect to burnt fast. The torch message was easier and more fun, here is the one I used. The torch never comes with fuel so either order some or pick some up at your local store.

Note: This recipe can be made up to 2 days ahead minus the sugar topping. Day of start with step 5 

Garnishes: Any fresh berries. Mint sprig. Whipped Cream. 

Flavorings: The base creme brûlée recipe is extremely versatile. Try it with the additions of coffee, pumpkin, chocolate, matcha or any fruit purée. Skies the limit when you’re having fun! 

Notes: There are many variations to the classic recipe but this makes it easy enough for the home cook with minimal tools necessary. This removes the need to temper the eggs with the cream mixture before cooking. Since you are not tempering the eggs the use of a sieve is not necessary either. 

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