Thursday, May 30, 2013

Rosie Makes Strawberry Custard Brûlée.

Strawberries might very well be my favorite fruit.

A few weeks ago,
the Hawthornes headed over to the Malco strawberry farm
in Point Harbor to pick our own strawberries.
Twenty pounds later, we headed home with our treasures.

Strawberry and Custard Brûlée
(Serves 6.)
1/3 cup sugar
2 TB flour
1 egg
3/4 cup skim milk
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
12 large strawberries, sliced
extra strawberries for garnish
brown sugar and/or turbinado sugar for sprinkling
powdered sugar
mint garnish, optional

Combine sugar, flour, and egg in a saucepan.
Gradually stir in milk/cream mixture.
Cook over medium low heat,
whisking briskly and constantly,
until mixture thickens, 
about 4-5 minutes.
Do not let the egg scramble.
If necessary, hover the pan over the heat source
to keep the egg from cooking.
When mixture thickens,
remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
Cover and chill thoroughly.

Place two strawberries, sliced, 
in bottom of each 3/4 cup ramiken.
Spoon custard evenly over strawberries.
Sprinkle brown sugar and/or turbinado sugar
over top of the custard
and quickly fire the sugar with a mini blow torch
until crackly and bubbly.
If you don't have a kitchen torch,
place under the broiler until sugar is caramelized.
Sprinkle powdered sugar over top
and garnish with mint, if desired.
Overlap strawberry slices in bottom of your ramekins.

Cook custard mixture until nicely thickened.
Remove from heat, stir in vanilla,
 let cool, then cover and refrigerate.

When thoroughly chilled,
spoon custard into ramekins.

Sprinkle sugar over top.

Torch away!
This is the fun part.

Top with additional strawberry slices.

A crème brûlée is an amazing thing.
You have the brittle crust of caramelized sugar
contrasting with the amazingly smooth texture of custard.
And you have the heat of the caramelized sugar
paired with the coolness of the custard.
It's win-win all the way.
You can't eat this and not have a happy mouth.

If desired, prettify it up with mint leaves and powdered sugar.

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