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Creme Brulee is one of the most popular French dessert recipes in America.
Some cooks like to add flavorings or liqueurs to the mix, but creme brulee is MOST delicious in its classic form. Here's the basic recipe from Debbie Puente at cremebrulee.com:
8 egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated white sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup granulated white sugar (for the caramelized topping)
Preheat oven to 300ºF.
In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick and pale yellow.
Add cream and vanilla, and continue to whisk until well blended.
Strain into a large bowl, skimming off any foam or bubbles.
Divide mixture among 6 ramekins or custard cups.
Place ramekins in a large pan filled with 1 or 2 inches of hot water, and bake until set around the edges, but still loose in the center, about 50 to 60 minutes.
Remove from oven and leave in the water bath until cooled.
Remove cups from water bath and chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days.
When ready to serve, sprinkle about 2 teaspoons of sugar over each custard.
Use a small, hand-held torch to melt sugar. If you don't have a torch, place under the broiler until sugar melts.
Re-chill custards for a few minutes before serving.
MAKES 6 SERVINGS
8 oz. Unsweetened Baking Chocolate
3 Egg Yolks
4 Egg Whites
1/2 cup Sugar
2 tbsp. softened Butter
Pinch of Salt
Chop the baking chocolate into little pieces.
Beat egg yolks with sugar in a bowl until it starts to whiten.
Put chopped chocolate in another bowl.
Add 3 tablespoons of water to the chocolate and melt the mixture in a double-boiler over a very low heat.
Stir constantly until chocolate melts. Never let the water boil.
Remove from heat and stir in softened butter until it melts.
Once cooled off, stir in the egg yolks.
In a mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with salt until firm.
Delicately stir the egg whites into the chocolate mixture.
Pour the mousse into individual glasses.
Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.
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