Creme Brulee

A custard dessert with a crisp, burnt sugar topping will make you feel like you are in Paris (and like you can bake like a pro :)
Serves 6.

1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
2 tsp vanilla extract
boiling water, for water bath
sugar, for topping

- Preheat oven to 325F. Arrange six 6-oz ramekins in a 9×13-inch baking dish.
- Combine milk and cream in a medium saucepan (I scraped vanilla bean seeds into this mixture, as well as let the whole bean simmer. It gave it a very rich vanilla taste.) Let sit until hot, stirring so a film doesn't form on the surface.
- Fill another pan, or tea kettle, with water and bring to a boil. You will use this in a minute.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, salt, eggs, egg yolks and vanilla extra until well combined. - Whisking constantly, very slowly stream in the hot milk mixture to temper the eggs. Strain mixture into a large measuring cup or a bowl with a pouring spout. This gets all the egg clumps out.
- Divide mixture evenly into prepared ramekins. Place pan onto a rack in the oven, and pour boiling water into the pan around the ramekins so that water comes halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes, until custards are set. A very sharp knife inserted into the center of a custard should come out clean.
- Carefully remove tray from oven and use tongs to lift ramekins carefully out of the water bath and onto a cooling rack.
- Cool to room temperature before refrigerating, then cover with plastic wrap and chill completely before adding topping.
- Custards can be prepared up to two days in advance.

For topping: Add about a tablespoon of sugar onto the top of each custard and spread into an even layer. Using a kitchen torch and moving it slowly, but contsantly, caramelize the topping. Topping can also be caramelized under the broiler.
Allow caramel to set before serving.
Enjoy with whipped cream or berries. 

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