Baked Custard

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Baked Custard

6 egg yolks

5 oz. sugar

scant 1/2 teaspoon salt

1  cup half-and-half

2 cups  heavy cream

1 1/2 teaspoons  pure vanilla extract

nutmeg

9 custard cups or 2 quart baking dish large enough to hold all custard cups or baking dish and pan . Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl whisk together all the ingredients except nutmeg until well combined. Strain through a fine sieve into picture and pour evenly into custard cups placed in a large pan or pour into a 2 quart baking dish place into a larger pan. Sprinkle nutmeg over the top of the custards. Carefully pour into large pan with custard dishes inside, hot water 1 inch up the sides of the baking dish/dishes. Place in oven and bake for about 30-35 minutes or until a sharp thin knife inserted into center comes out clean, Remove immediately from hot water and cool on rack.

This can be easily turned into crème brulee by sprinkling sugar over the top of the baked custards and then caramelizing the sugar using a torch or placing under a broiler.

Bittersweet Chocolate and Almond Creme Brulee

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3 cups heavy cream

8 egg yolks

1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed, unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 tsp. almond extract

3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled

1/2 cup sliced almonds

brown sugar

In a medium saucepan over medium heat , heat cream just until bubbles begin to form around outside edge of pan. In a bowl whisk together egg yolks, sugar, cocoa powder and almond extract. Add a ladle of hot cream whisking it into egg mixture to temper. Add egg mixture, whisking constantly into hot cream.Constantly stir over medium heat until mixture thickens. Do not let boil or get any hotter than 180 degrees. Once thickened, remove from heat and stir in melted chocolate. Place into custard cups or souffle dishes and top with sliced almonds. Refrigerate covered at least 6 hours to overnight. 1 hour prior to serving, place in freezer uncovered. Remove from freezer and sprinkle brown sugar over the tops of each dessert. Torch lightly until sugar begins to caramelize. Watch carefully because brown sugar burns easily.

Blueberry Lemon Creme Brulee

Blueberry Lemon Creme Brulee

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1 pint blueberries

4 large eggs

2/3 cup superfine sugar

zest and juice from 3 lemons

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream

2/3 cup granulated sugar for topping

Heat oven to 300 degrees. Divide berries among six 8oz. ramekins.

Whisk the eggs, sugar and lemon zest and juice in medium bowl until smooth. Stir in cream. Pour equal amounts of the lemon cream into each ramekin. Place in a roasting pan and add hot water to just half way up the sides of ramekins. Carefully place in oven and bake for about 30-45 minutes until just set. Remove ramekins from roasting pan and completely cool. Then refrigerate. When ready to serve, sprinkle tops with sugar and torch the tops or place under broiler until sugar caramelized.