food / recipe

crème caramel

Although I don’t normally obsess over TV shows, when I do it becomes a full-blown affair. I’m not even kidding when I say that I can’t miss a single episode, and usually read up everything to do with the series when I get sick of waiting for the next week (or year, in Sherlock’s case)… That being said, it must be a blessing in disguise that the Great Australian Bake Off isn’t on everyday! See, in recent weeks I seem to have lost my baking mojo, what with a lack of time and energy to try new recipes and clean up afterwards. Nevertheless, watching the contestants make pies and cookies (or utterly fail at it) is strangely addicting, and I think it’s inspired me to try more of the recipes that I’ve been putting off for ages.

Anyway, I’ve had this classic crème caramel on my to-bake list for a long time, and until recently I never actually bothered making it! Now you could opt for those sinful refrigerated versions from the supermarket, but obviously nothing beats that feeling of gratification from knowing that you made something yourself. So read on for the recipe…

Just a little side note – don’t be like me, who stupidly burnt the first batch of sugar! As it turns out it’s pretty easy to get carried away, and realise that you have a saucepan of burnt toffee after it’s already too late. In the end I still think the caramel hardened too quickly, so if there are any dessert aficionados out there any tips would be much appreciated…

Recipe adapted from Donna Hay Magazine:
⅔ cup (150g) caster sugar
⅓ cup (80ml) water
¾ cup (180ml) milk
¾ cup (180ml) single (pouring) cream
2 eggs
4 egg yolks, extra
⅓ cup (75g) caster sugar, extra
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 150°C (300°F). Place the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to the boil and cook for 8-10 minutes or until mixture is dark golden. Pour into 4 x ¾ cup-capacity (180ml) ovenproof dishes or ramekins. Set aside for 5 minutes or until caramel is set.

2. Place the milk and cream in a saucepan over medium heat until it just comes to the boil. Remove from heat.

3. Place the eggs, extra yolks, extra sugar and vanilla in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Gradually add the milk mixture, whisking to combine. Strain the mixture and pour into the dishes.

4. Place dishes in a water bath lined with a folded tea towel. Bake for 35 minutes or until set. Remove the dish and refrigerate for 2 hours or until cold. Remove the creme caramels from the fridge 30 minutes before serving. Turn out onto plates to serve. Serves 4.

The end result? A really nice and simple dessert that even the pickiest of eaters will probably enjoy! My only issue is that there wasn’t enough to go around in my family of six, but I guess that’s my own fault for not bothering to calculate the right measurements. Anyway, definitely let me know if you happen to give this a try!