Who doesn’t love the sharp ‘crack’ of the burnt sugar as you dig into a creme brulee? Not many people I’m sure. And, even better… that delectably soft custard that lies in waiting just beneath it… Yummmm….
Can you tell I’m a fan of creme brulees? Yep, it was love at first bite when I first sampled creme brulee in a restaurant many years ago. And, it was one of the very first desserts I set about perfecting when I started this cooking lark. Since then I’ve made quite a few… from the good old Classic Creme Brulee, to the decadently rich Chocolate Creme Brulee and the perfect after dinner pick-me-up, the Espresso Creme Brulee.
Every one of them was fabulous. And, this White Chocolate & Rhubarb is no exception. An ultra creamy sweet custard with hints of white chocolate, enveloping small batons of tart rhubarb and topped with the ubiquitous layer of burnt sugar.
Thanks to Taste.com.au for this lovely little recipe. I scaled up the recipe from four to six servings and fiddled a little with quantities to make a slightly richer custard. However, if you want to go with the original recipe for four, with less cream and more milk, go with the original recipe.
Not surprisingly, this dessert went down extremely well with my very discerning family! Oh, and by the way, you can actually serve the pudding sans sugar topping. My dad doesn’t like the burnt sugar (he reckons it’s like eating glass – go figure), so he got just the baked custard which, as you can see from my photo below, is still pretty divine! Enjoy!
- 500ml (16.9 fl oz) heavy cream
- 100ml (3.2 fl oz) milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 150g (5.2 oz) white chocolate, chopped
- 6 large egg yolks
- 1/4-1/3 cup caster sugar, to taste
- 1 tablespoon raw caster sugar
- 3 stems rhubarb, cut into 3.5cm (1-1/3 inch) lengths
- 60ml (1/4 cup) water
- 2 tablespoons caster sugar, extra
- Preheat oven to 180C (360F) and place a jug full of water onto the boil.
- Bring cream, milk and vanilla extract to scalding point in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir chopped white chocolate into hot cream mixture until it melts.
- Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar in a heatproof bowl until thick and creamy.
- Place rhubarb pieces in a roasting pan. Top with water and the extra 2 tablespoons caster sugar. Roast for 15 minutes or until just tender. Drain the rhubarb and put aside.
- Reduce oven to 150C (300F).
- Whisk the cream mixture into the egg mixture (a little at first to temper the eggs, then the remaining mixture in a steady slow stream). Strain into a jug.
- Divide thoroughly drained rhubarb among six (3/4 cup) ovenproof ramekins. Pour over custard mixture (the rhubarb will float to the surface).
- Place ramekins in a roasting pan. Very carefully add boiling water into the pan to reach halfway up sides. Then carefully place in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until just set (there should be be a distinct jiggle in the middle).
- Take the cooked custards out of the pan and place on a wire rack to cool. Then cover lightly in plastic wrap or silver foil and chill for 4 hours or until set.
- When ready to serve, sprinkle raw sugar over the custards and use a blow-torch to caramelize. Let them cool for a couple of minutes, then serve.
Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Sigma 30mm 1.4 DC ‘Art’ lens / Natural lighting