Most requested recipe.
- Split vanilla bean pod in half lengthwise, scraping seeds from bean pod. In medium saucepan, combine bean pod and seeds with cream. Bring just to a simmer over low heat. Remove from heat. Let stand 20 minutes to infuse flavor. In medium bowl, gently whisk egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale yellow. Slowly stir in warm cream mixture. Strain into large bowl. Divide custard equally among 8 (6 ounce) ramekins or custard cups. Place ramekins in a 9x13 inch baking pan, carefully adding enough hot water to the pan to reach halfway up the ramekins. Cover loosely with foil. Bake in a preheated 300 F oven until custard is firm at edges but still a bit wobbly in center (40-50 minutes). Transfer ramekins to wire rack to cool completely. Refrigerate, covered, until cold (at least 3 hours or up to 2 days.)
- To Serve: Sprinkle 1 teaspoon sugar over each custard in a thin even layer. Using small kitchen torch, hold the flame 1/4" above sugared surface. Start at one side and continuously move the flame in small circles around the surface until the sugar melts, bubbles and lightly browns (about 2 minutes). Serve immediately.
- Ginger: Substitute one 2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into 1/16 inch rounds for vanilla bean. Prepare as above.
- Cappuccino: Add 2 tablespoons instant espresso coffee powder and 2 teaspoons cinnamon along with vanilla bean. Prepare as above.
- Orange: Add 2 teaspoons orange zest along with vanilla bean. Prepare as above. Tips: If kitchen torch is not available, arrange ramekins in pan filled with ice cubes and water. Broil just until sugar is evenly caramelized (1-2 minutes). Do not overcook as custard can curdle.
* Recipes created for given quantity. Changes to quantities are for planning purposes only and have not been tested.