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Crème de la Crème

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Nothing beats the sweet, rich flavours of these classic French desserts.
Photos courtesy of Adobe Stock


Serves 4

– 1tsp cornflour
– 200ml orange juice,
– freshly squeezed
– 1tbsp orange marmalade
– 1tbsp amaretto
– ½ lemon, juiced
– 10g unsalted butter, cubed

Start by making four pancakes; place them on a plate to keep warm.

Then make the sauce: whisk the cornflour with the orange juice until smooth.

Warm it in a pan, stirring to thicken for around 2 minutes.

Add the marmalade, amaretto and lemon juice and cook for a few minutes more.

Gradually add the butter, whisking until you have a glossy sauce. Dust each pancake with a little caster sugar and top with the marmalade amaretto sauce.

Fold into four, and top with a bit more sauce to serve.

Creme brulee. Traditional French vanilla cream dessert. Burned cream, burnt or Trinity creme. Spanish crema catalana, four ramekin on marble. Vertical, top view


Serves 2

– 5 large egg yolks
– 50g golden caster
– sugar, plus extra for the topping
– 426ml double cream
– 100ml whole milk
– 2tsp vanilla essence

Heat the oven to 180˚C.

Whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a mixing bowl for 1 minute.

Pour the cream, milk and vanilla essence into a pan and bring almost to the boil.

Stir the hot cream into the beaten egg yolks; scoop off and discard any foam.

Next, place 4 ramekins (175ml) in a roasting tin at least 7.5cm deep.

Pour hot water into the tin to come about 1.5cm up the sides of the ramekins.

Fill the ramekins with the hot cream.

Put them in the oven and lay a baking sheet over the top of the tin so it sits well above the ramekins covering them – leave a small gap at one side to allow air to circulate.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the mixture is softly set.

Leave the ramekins to cool for a couple of minutes, then put them in the fridge to chill.

When ready to serve, sprinkle 1½ tsp of caster sugar over each ramekin, covering them completely.

Spray the sugar with a little water, then use a blow torch to caramelise it.

Serve when the sugar coating on each brûlée is firm.

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