Creme Brulee
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Though its name is French, Crème Brûlée is probably either an English or Spanish creation (though Germany also claims to have made it first).  In England it is known as Burnt Cream, and sometimes called Trinity Cream because of its popularity at Trinity College, where it was served with the college crest branded on top.  As further proof that it didn’t originate in France, there is no reference to it in Escoffier’s Le Guide Culinaire, and the Larrouse Gastronomique only mentions is glancingly under the name Crème Anglaise au Miroir.  In Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Simone Beck, Louise Bertholle and Julia Child, the authors assert its origins are either Creole (in the 1963 Edition), or that it was likely (apparently”) first made at Christ’s College in Cambridge (in the 40th Anniversary Edition).  In the early 1980s, Alain Sailhac, at the time head chef of the landmark New York restaurant Le Cirque, sampled the ancient Catalonian custard known as Crema Catalana on a trip to Spain, and brought the idea back to the owner, Sirio Maccioni, who loved it and insisted they develop a version for their menu. The pastry chef at Le Cirque decided to try serving it in individual Ramekins, which has become the commonly accepted way of serving the dessert.  It caught on quickly, and today Crème Brûlée is a staple at many fine restaurants in both America and Europe.

Culinary Uses

Crème Brûlée is a rich, usually Vanilla-flavored custard dessert made of Whipping CreamEggs and Sugar, which is finished by sprinkling it with a thin layer of Sugar that is Caramelized by Broiling or with a Butane Torch.  Traditionally, the custard is baked and served in one large dish, but nowadays it is almost always served in individual Ramekins.  The custards are baked in a Bain Marie and are often chilled for 24 hours before adding the final burnt Sugar topping.

The Crème Brûlée sugar topping is usually made with a Brown Sugar or Raw Sugar (TurbinadoDemeraraRapadura or Muscovado), but there are versions using Maple Sugar or Molasses as well. Though Vanilla is the traditional choice if a flavoring is used, some chefs move further afield, using such things as Green TeaCoffeeAlmondPumpkinChocolateCoconutMaple SyrupKey LimeOrangeRaspberries, or Liqueurs (Grand Marnier is especially popular).

Nowadays, Crème Brûlée is also a popular moniker for many confections. There’s Crème Brûlée Doughnuts, Ice CreamFrench ToastCheesecake, Cupcakes, flavored Coffee, and even Crème Brûlée covered Almonds, to name a few.

Low Fat


Low Calorie