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Date-Night Grand Marnier Creme Brulee
I think I have as many creme brulee recipes as Victoria’s got thongs, but this one has to be my favorite. I also have a 101 recipes involving Grand Marnier, but this is probably the best place to start in combining the two. So if you’ve got a date, then this is a great way to end it. Loaded statement – I am well aware. Small dinner party coming up? Make sure you plan for a second helping for each guest. Otherwise, any engagement will do. This isn’t the absolute easiest dessert to make, but it isn’t at all difficult. Even if it were, smooth sweet custard topped with a sugar lid is well worth it!
This time I tried something new and didn’t take as many photos during the process. Please take a moment and tell me what you think about that. Also, the recipe is in the instructions as you go instead of only at the bottom. You are now reading one of my hidden message coupons. When I think of a better name for it, I’ll let you know. Feel free to make suggestions. Anyhoo, this offer is good thru April 5th and you must reference the name of the post (“Date-Night Grand Marnier Creme Brulee”) when ordering online or by phone. The offer is for 20% off ANY order. Enjoy the coupon while it lasts! Do tell all of your friends, family, and pets about Sift! This may be a good time to subscribe to the blog so that you can keep up with these hidden specials. You never know when you will have to send something sweet and decadent to a well-deserving recipient or for yourself. Otherwise, visit www.SiftAtlanta.com often.
Back to it! Feel free to make this into one large 1-qt treat or separate ramekins. The recipe is written for 2 servings. Simply double it if you want extra. Likely, you will. I hope you try it and like it.
Let’s get started!
Put some water on the stove to boil for the water bath you will need shortly. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Get either 2 or 4 – 5 oz ramekins ready and a baking pan large enough to fit the ramekins.
Combine 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream, a baby pinch of salt in a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally, just until hot. Now remove it from the heat.
Whisk 2 large egg yolks, 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar, and 2 1/2 tsp Grand Marnier in a medium bowl. Slowly pour the hot cream mixture in while whisking constantly.
Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer set over a large glass bowl or measuring cup. This will keep any egg bits and other solids from making your custard lumpy or anything besides velvety smooth. If you skip this step, as I often do, it’s no biggie. Just don’t be surprised if your if you hit an eggy nugget. Yeah, just use the strainer. I’ve been doing this a while and can get the mixture pretty dang smooth with no help. I’m not boasting. I am only saying I’ve had plenty of practice.
Moving on…divide the mixture between your ramekins and start skimming all of that foam off the top. Place the ramekins in the baking pan. Place the pan in the oven. Add enough boiling water to the baking pan to come a little more than halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Don’t do what I did on plenty of occasions (including this one) and add the water to the baking pan before putting the pan in the oven. Although I never spilled the hot water, the challenge of making it to the oven carrying the hot water was the type of challenge I usually go for.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. The custard should be set around the edges but still jiggly in the center. Never fear, this is one of the few areas in life where a little jiggle is just what we want. The custards will set further as they cool. Once you’ve removed the pans from the oven, let the the ramekins remain in the water bath for 10-15 minutes.
Move your ramekins to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate, covered, for a minimum of 4 hours but no more than 2 days.When you’re ready for your sugar lid, proceed…
You may use a broiler for this step. I used a chef’s torch.
For a Broiler: Preheat the broiler. Have a pan ready for the ramekins . You will be using this pan for an ice water bath for your ramekins. Blot your custards with a paper towel to rid them of any condensation. Put about a Tbsp of sugar on top of your custards and swirl the sugar around so that it evenly covers the entire surface of the custard. If you used a 1-qt baking dish to make one big creme brulee, then 1/4 cup sugar should do. Place your ramekins in the baking dish. Make sure there is enough ice water to come a little over halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
Broil the custards for about 2 to 3 minutes. The sugar should be completely melted and a dark amber color. Keep an eye on them. You may have to rotate them or move them around so that may carmelize evenly. Remove your custards from the broiler and let them sit in the water bath for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve right away.
For a Torch: Blot your custards with a paper towel to rid them of any condensation. Put about a Tbsp of sugar on top of your custards and swirl the sugar around so that it evenly covers the entire surface of the custard. If you used a 1-qt baking dish to make one big creme brulee, then 1/4 cup sugar should do. Now, turn the torch on and torch away! Don’t stay in one spot too long unless you’ve got a taste for burnt sugar lids. Just be sure to melt all of the sugar crystals.