Recipe: Foolproof Crème Brûlée

Recipe: Foolproof Crème Brûlée

Crème brûlée, also known as burnt cream or crema catalana, is a delicious creamy dessert consisting of a rich custard topped with a contrasting layer of hard caramel. This sweet is usually reserved for professional caterers as it is not easy to get right and requires a blowtorch to work the top layer. However, Beth has come to our rescue... we no longer have to wait for a special occasion to enjoy this treat because she has devised a fool-proof way to make perfect home-made crème brûlée. Watch her video on Entertaining with Beth, follow the instructions below and enjoy.

Makes: 6 servings in 2.5cm x 12.5cm ramekins


  • 3 cups (720ml) of heavy cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, scraped
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup (65g) sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 tbsp (69g) brown sugar for the tops


  1. Preheat oven to 300 F (150 C).
  2. In a saucepan combine the heavy cream, vanilla bean seeds and the pod. Bring to a simmer.
  3. Meanwhile combine the egg yolks, sugar and salt.
  4. Fish out the vanilla pod from the milk mixture, and slowly pour a stream of the hot milk into the egg mixture. Whisk to combine.
  5. Using a fine mesh strainer, over a heat safe bowl, strain the mixture.
  6. Ladle mixture into ramekins, and place in a roasting pan. Place in the oven and pour hot water slowly in the corner of the roasting pan to avoid splashing into the custards. (They will not set if they are mixed with splashed water, so be careful not to splash). Place just enough so that it reaches half way up the ramekins.
  7. Bake for 15-20 mins just until custards are set and jiggle slightly.
  8. Allow them to cool, then cover and refrigerate.

To serve:

  1. Sprinkle tops of custard with 1 tsp each of the brown sugar.
  2. Position your oven rack on the highest shelf of your oven. Set your oven to broil.
  3. Place the custards on a low profile cookie sheet and pop under the broiler for about 10-15 seconds, or until the sugar has browned and caramelized.


Do not walk away from custards under broiler you must watch this carefully or they will catch fire if left too long to broil!