Blackcurrant and White Chocolate Creme Brulee
This recipe was originally given to me by my late friend and colleague Michael Lee-Richards. We went another step and added black currants to counteract the richness. Use New Zealand black currants, always available frozen, as they are fleshier and sweeter than imported varieties. Use a chef’s blowtorch available in the Ruth Pretty kitchen shop to brulee or "burn" the sugar topping.
500ml (2 cups) cream
100g (1/2 cup) sugar (plus 5 tsp for topping)
1/2 vanilla bean (split in half lengthwise)
75g white chocolate (best quality tablet, roughly chopped) ( white chocolate melts are not suitable)
5 egg yolks
20g-25g (20-25) black currants (stalks off)
- Preheat oven to 150°C.
- Pour cream into a medium heavy based saucepan and add half the sugar. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean and add seeds and bean to cream.
- Place saucepan over a low heat and stir till sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and allow cream to sit for 2 minutes.
- Away from heat add white chocolate to cream mixture and stir till smooth.
- Place egg yolks and remaining sugar into a bowl and combine with a wooden spoon hoping not to create froth.
- Gradually and slowly pour warm cream mixture into egg yolk mixture stirring till combined. Pour liquid through a sieve to remove vanilla bean, any strands of egg white and froth. If any froth remains on liquid scrape it off.
- Pour liquid into 5 small ovenproof ramekins or cups. Pop 4-5 black currants into each ramekin. Place ramekins into a roasting tray and add enough warm water to roasting tray to come halfway up the sides of ramekins.
- Place in oven and bake for 55-60 minutes or till custards are just set in the centres. They should still appear wobbly. Immediately remove from water and cool. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or preferably overnight.
- To serve: Sprinkle 1 teaspoon sugar over each custard and brûlée till sugar is browned. Serve immediately.