“I think every woman should have a blowtorch” – Julia Child
Grab your kitchen torch and let’s make crème brulee, a thick and delicious vanilla bean infused custard with a layer of burnt-sugar on top! I love Crème Brûlée, can you tell? The best part is using the torch!
This creamy, rich dessert is dangerously easy to make and is perfect for Valentine’s Day or any special, romantic occasion. It is so good you will want to eat it every day. If you can’t stop, see your doctor.
You won’t believe how easy it is to make and the best thing is that it can be prepared the day before and all you have to do is grab your torch for melting the sugar on top!
Start off by preheating your oven to 325 degrees and bring a full kettle of water to boil that we will use for the water bath. In a large roasted pan, place a towel on the bottom of the pan, place your ramequins on top of the towel and set aside.
In a medium sauce pan, combine 2 cups of heavy cream, the seeds from ½ vanilla bean and ½ vanilla bean pod. Cut the vanilla bean down the center and scrape out the vanilla beans, then place the beans and the other half bean into the cream. If you don’t have a vanilla bean you can use 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla or vanilla bean paste. I think the vanilla bean adds more flavor. Set the burner between low and medium low. We need to scald the cream mixture to 140 degrees. If you have thermometers use it to check the temperature, whatever you do to NOT let the cream boil.
While the cream is heating, in a large mixing bowl, whisk 4 egg yolks with the ½ cup of sugar. Once the cream reaches 140 degrees we are now ready to temper the cream mixture into the eggs. This is a very important step because you to not want to add the hot cream mixture to the egg mixture all at once otherwise you’ll get scrambled eggs. Pour about an ounce or two of the cream mixture into the egg mixture while whisking at the same time, whisk until completely incorporated.
Egg yolk mixture before adding sugar
Egg yolk and sugar mixture.
Notice the above picture with the bubbles, after the egg yolk and sugar has been mixture you will have some bubbles. You need to remove all of the bubbles using a ladle and discard.
Egg yolk and sugar mixture after bubbles have been removed.
Now continue adding the cream mixture to the egg mixture until it has all been incorporated. This is your custard mixture for the base of your Crème Brûlée. Before pouring the custard mixture into your crème brulee ramequins, you need to strain it through a fine mesh sieve. This will remove the vanilla bean pod as well as other bits of egg that cooked.
Now fill your ramequins, I find that using a soup ladle makes this an easy step. Place pan in oven and then fill the pan with the boiling water until the water comes up about halfway on the ramequins. Bake for approximately 30 to 35 minutes depending on the size of your ramequins and your oven until the custard is just set. I always watch the custard closely the last 5 to 10 minutes. You will know the custard is set if you carefully shake the pan and the custards tremble like jello just slightly in the center.
Remove the pan from the oven and using tongs, carefully remove the crème brulee ramequins and let cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Be careful not to let any water drip into the Crème Brûlée.
Ramequins just taken out of the oven cooling on rack.
Place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours and up to 3 days. This is an important step because the custard is going to finish setting up during this time.
Grab your torch, after 2 hours they are ready to serve. This is where I start to get excited to eat these wonderful desserts. Now you’re ready to sprinkle with a layer of turbinado sugar and brulee with your torch. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar to caramelize the top, then swirl the dish around so that the surface is evenly covered with sugar, anything that’s left over, dump on to the next one or into another dish. This is important, there shouldn’t be any loose sugar on top before torching.
Before torching, think about what you are doing, please be careful, be mindful of those around you. It only takes a few seconds to torch the sugar, do this quickly so that it does not heat the cold custard. You are looking for good caramelization. Once you brulee the sugar serve immediately or the caramel topping will become soft.
They are ready to serve and if you ask me, nothing beats the first spoon full of Crème Brûlée… the crackling of the sugar breaking that reveals the sweet gooey silky custard underneath, what could be better!?! 🙂
Crème Brulee Recipe
2 cups heavy cream
1 vanilla bean ( if can substitute the with 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or paste)
4 egg yolks
½ cup sugar
Turbinado sugar to caramelize the top
Makes four servings.
Do you like Crème Brûlée ??
Don’t be intimidated if you’ve never made Crème Brûlée! If I can do it… you can do it.
Have a wonderful weekend, my friends!
Cheesecake with Strawberry Topping
66 thoughts on “Making Crème Brûlée”
Can I come live at your house??? Oh my gosh, Michael, I love Creme Brulee and yours looks sooooooooooo good. I don’t think my husband would let me use a blow torch though. Ha ha. Blessings, Natalie 🙂
Absolutely Natalie! Isn’t Crème Brûlée the best ever dessert, I love it! 🙂
Indeed it is my friend!!!! Hugs, Natalie 🙂
Now if I had a blowtorch… 😉 I’m always afraid of egg-based puddings as I made one once that went watery. Maybe I’ll just come and visit you for tea instead!
You would do just fine with the torch!! 🙂 You are invited to visit me anytime! Has your weather turn cold yet?
Thanks! Maybe a little snow at the weekend, but barely below freezing point so it won’t stick around!
Great quote – I’m imagining the damage and the delight if every women really did have a blow torch 😉
I know what you mean, could be a scary thought!
Yum!! My son’s favorite desert–and yes, I have a blowtorch–albeit a small version strictly for the kitchen—and I know how to use it—HA 🙂
I know why it is his favorite, it’s so good! 🙂
Which begs the question…why do I not have a blow torch??? Your Crème Brûlée looks fabulous and does seem dangerously easy to make, which IS dangerous. Your photographs are beautiful.
thank you, it is very easy and oh so worth the effort!!! 🙂
One of my favourite desserts, Michael…pity I don’t have a blowtorch! not yet anyway…
It is so good! 😉
Yum yum yum! I’ve only made creme brulee once in my life. It was for Valentine’s Day dinner several years ago. It didn’t turn out perfect, but was still yummy! Yours looks great and the sugar on top is torched to perfection 🙂
Hi Tammy! It is so delicious! Thank you for your nice comment. It will soon be Valentine’s Day, you should try again using my recipe.
Don’t you just love Crème Brulee 😉
Crème brulee is one of my all-time favorite desserts! The sweet custard is absolute perfection, and the burnt sugar on top is so fun to crack! Your version is gorgeous, thanks so much for sharing!
I am glad you had a chance to visit Allie and leaving your nice comment! Crème Brulee is also one of my favorites!
Crème Brulee is one of my favorite desserts. I’m going to have to get a torch so I can make this. Yummy! 🙂
One of my favorites too Robin! 🙂
I love that first crack of the spoon and the first bite sends me swooning. It is a really easy but classy dessert. Really, who doesn’t like playing with fire in the kitchen?
Me too, that first bite and all bites before the last is the best! 🙂
Looks good, I would like to try it!
Hi Jen, next time we have yall over to eat with us I will make it for you! 🙂
This looks fantastic! I adore a creme brulee!! I do not have a little torch and I don’t think my husband wants me to have one either. 🙂 But maybe for the best I would always want to make these!
Hi Bernice, thank you! Isn’t it delicious! You could always use your broiler to brown the sugar.
What a wonderful ideal Michael! I never thought about using the broiler. 🙂
Michael, my most fave dessert when we go out is this!! Now, I get to make it from home… as I just put a blowtorch in my cart off Amazon! I remember watching Julia Child when I was little. And, was always inspired from then. Loved the quote… so true!
Pinned and printing off. (=
Hi Gloria! I do the same thing we go out to eat, always Crème Brûlée! I am happy that you visited my site, please let me know if you do make the Crème Brûlée! Come back and post, with picture. 🙂 Thank you for pinning!
“If you can’t stop, see your doctor.” I love it! Great step by step pics and instructions too.
Hi Julie! I am so glad you got a chance to visit my blog and thank you for your nice comment. If you like Crème Brûlée, you understand what I was trying to say, haha 🙂 I hope you get a chance to visit again soon.
I love creme brulee, especially since my sister bought me my own kitchen blowtorch three years ago! Your brulee looks fantastic.
thank you, I love it too!
We must be on the same wavelength, I’ve been pondering making a creme brulee for the past few days and here you are! Lovely!! And you’ve explained about the “shaking the extra sugar off” part that I didn’t know. Now I’ve got to try this one, it’s a favorite dessert around here!
Don’t you just love Crème Brûlée 😉 I wanted to tell you thank you again for giving me the information about your cake pedestal, I was able to order one, I should have it soon! I don’t know why but they are hard to find around here.
Different stores in cities have different merchandise. I’ve learned that there are “A,B, and C” stores. The ones that have greater profits get the better product. Doesn’t that make you mad?! Anyway.. glad you’ve found it and got it ordered. I’ve never tried ordering from them online.. I’m off to take a look!
I know what you are talking about and yes it makes me mad. Walmart seems to be taking over in our area, they are now building grocery stores, only groceries. They are putting them on every corner. I’ve gotten that I just don’t like shopping at Walmart. I had to call them to get an my order, they were friendly on the phone but had trouble ordering online. I hope you have a wonderful weekend!! 🙂
Oh My God, that looks Divine Michael 🙂 I am just back from the middle east and have gained a few pounds due to my incessant eating. Now I want a crème brulee! 🙂
Hi Pallavi! Thank you..:-) I wish I could do the traveling that you do, I can’t wait to read about your trip on your blog! You are lucky to be able to travel to wonderful places!
Wow, this looks awesome! I’ve never made creme brulee because I always thought it was difficult, but you made it look so easy!
Hi Beth, it’s really really delicious! Let me know if you give it a try! 😉
This looks SO good! Would you believe i’ve never made creme brulee? I love ordering it at restaurants but have never tried it myself. Must change that soon! Amy @ Fearless Homemaker
Hi Amy, you should give it a try, it’s really easy and it is so well worth the effort! Crème Brûlée is delicious. Thank you for visiting my blog and your wonderful comments! I hope you will visit again soon.
This makes me want a creme brulee right now! I use any excuse to bust out my kitchen torch!
Hi Heather! Isn’t Crème Brûlée delicious! If you do make it let me know! I am so glad you got a chance to visit my site and your nice comments. I hope you will get a chance to visit again soon. I bookmarked your site, loved all your recipes.
You creme brulee looks perfect! I’ve never made it before but I think I can do it with your detailed directions. Plus the torching part really looks like fun!
thank you,… you should give it a try, it’s not hard and if I can do it you can do it! It is really good! 🙂
Love that quote – I need a blowtorch! LOL This looks yummy!
Creme brûlée is one of my all-time favorite desserts but I have never tried making it at home. I need to find one of those little torches and make these for valentines day!
It’s also one my favorites as well!! It’s very easy to make and using the torch is fun too. It would be good for Valentine’s Day! I ma glad you had a chance to visit my site again. I really enjoy your site, some really delicious recipes! 🙂
I love creme brulee, it is one of my favorite desserts and yours looks wonderful 🙂
Me too! Isn’t it really good! 😉
Absolutely, it is my favorite too. can’t wait to try this on weekend.
Hi Balvinder! Creeme Brulee is great!
Oh sweet Hannah, this creme brûlée has me droooooling!! It looks divine!!
good morning Jocelyn, Crème Brûlée is a wonderful dessert, I love it! Thank you for visiting my site and posting your nice comment, I hope you will get a chance to come back soon!
I’ve never made creme bulee before…I need to try this!
You should give it a try, if I can make it you can make it!
Hi Ashley, it’s easy to make, you should give it a try. Please let me know how it turns out! 🙂
I love crème brülée but I’m definitely doing without because I don’t have a torch. 🙂
Hi Karen! First off I am so glad you had a chance to visit my site and thank you for the comment. I love crème brülée too! 🙂
The pleasure was all mine…you have a great site. Not only are you a good cook but a talented craftsman which I admire a lot. 🙂
Yummy !! But I’m afraid of using the torch…. I’ll have to get over that ’cause the topping is one of the best parts of Creme Brulee !!
Yep, I agree but it is all good! 🙂