Lavender Creme Brulee by Chef David Lawrence
Lavender Creme Brulee
by Chef David Lawrence
This wonderful and romantic twist to an already romantic dessert was the first recipe that really tugged at my heart strings. Here it is, in his own words . . .
LAVENDER CREME BRULEE
I went through an obsession with all things lavender. I hunted down every recipe I could find that used the delicate, purple flowers. This is an impressive dessert, yet one that people are incredibly intimidated by. They think of Creme Brulee as something you order in a fancy restaurant, not something to be made at home. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is ridiculously east to make, and perfuming the custard with dried lavender flowers really makes it something special.
- 4 cups heavy cream
- 1 TBSP dried lavender flowers
- 8 large egg yolks
- 3/4 cup sugar, divided
Preheat oven to 300 degrees
Place a large baking dish in the center of the oven and fill it with about an inch of boiling water to create a water bath.
Meanwhile, spray 6 (1/2 cup) ramekins with non-stick cooking spray. In a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat, bring the cream and the lavender flowers to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to steep for five minutes. Strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve to remove the lavender flowers.
In a large bowl, mix together the egg yolks and half of the sugar until light and creamy. Slowly add the cream to the egg mixture, a little at a time, whisking constantly. You want to temper, not scramble the eggs.
Pour the custard into the ramekins, filling them about 2/3 full. Place the ramekins in the baking pan and add more water if necessary to bring the water three quarters of the way up the sides.
Bake for 60 minutes or until the custard is set around the edges but still has a slight jiggle in the middle. Cooking time will depend on the size of the ramekins. Begin checking at 30 minutes. Let the custards cool in the water bath for 30 minutes, then chill for at least two hours.
When ready to serve, sprinkle the remaining sugar over the custards and using a small hand-held torch, caramelize the tops until they bubble and turn golden brown. If you don’t have a torch, place the ramekins on a sheet pan six inches below the broiler for a few minutes to achieve the same effect. Refrigerate for ten minutes before serving.
Recipe and photo reprinted with permission of Chef David Lawrence