ith Valentines Day heavy on the February agenda and a strong committed desire to stay at home and cook up a feast, this dessert made a perfect and suggestively named addition. Personally, the thought of going out for dinner on Valentines Day fills me with dread! The busy restaurants, the ‘special menus’, the overpriced deals and the crowds of daters and lovers. Understandably, showing your love with your cooking is not for everyone. And I’ll admit, for someone who loves nothing but spending a month menu planning and an entire evening in the kitchen, creating a 3 course feast was selfishly high on my priorities. This also being the way to a/my man’s heart, it seemed like a win-win…
When thinking of a menu, creme brûlée and passion fruit were the first things on the list being two of my beloved guests favourites. A decadent, creamy and light end to a meal that finished off a French themed super perfectly. Call me cliche with the theme but I didn’t hear any complaints…
I always fail to remember how easy creme brûlée is to make. And this year I finally, FINALLY invested in a cooks blowtorch. And an investment I wish I’d done long ago. A cheap and tremendously useful kitchen addition. Gone are the days of burnt creme brûlées shamefully neglected under the grill. Sweet creme brûlée, a mans gadget and the involvement of flames…again…a win-win dessert. And who doesn’t love the first crack of the sugary top!?
Serving suggestion: I failed to make these on the night but I’d serve these with mini coconut shortbreads. See here and instead of adding the rosemary, replace with 2 tbsp of lightly toasted desiccated coconut.
Serves 5 (I reused the infamous ‘Gu’ ramekins and this made 5)
- 500ml double cream
- 100g caster sugar
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 vanilla pod
- 6 passion fruit
- 6 tbsp caster sugar
- Preheat the oven to 150°C. Find a deep roasting tin and get your ramekins ready in the tray.
- Add the double cream to a saucepan and scarp in the seeds of the vanilla pod using a teaspoon and add in the pod too. Scald the cream. I.e. Heat until just below the boiling point. It should be just ready to bubble but not simmer. Remove from the what and let the vanilla infuse for a few moment while you whisk the eggs.
- In a large bowl, add the egg yolks, sugar and the pulp from all the passion fruits. Whisk well to combine.
- Place a tea towel underneath the bowl to prevent it moving and then, whilst whisking continuously, pour in the hot cream in a slow stream. Continue whisking until well combined.
- Strain the mixture through a sieve into a good pouring jug or saucepan. Discard the vanilla pod husk and the passion fruit seeds.
- Pour the mixture evenly among the ramekins in the roasting tray filling to the top.
- Fill the tray with hot water, pouring until the liquid comes about halfway up the ramekins.
- Carefully so as not to spill, place the tray in the centre of the oven and cook for 30-35 minutes until just set and with a very slight wobble in the centre. Leave to cool completely before chilling in the fridge.
- When ready to eat, remove from the fridge and scatter a thin, even layer of caster sugar over the top. Using your blow torch, glaze the surface and the sugar will begin to caramelise. Rotate the ramekin as it melts to ensure it evenly caramelises being careful not to burn. Sit for about 1 minute and then enjoy! With shortbreads if you wish.
If you’re keen for a French showstopper then I also made this pork cassoulet for main.