Lately I’ve been on a caramel kick. This is our current go-to for dessert for dinner parties. It’s usually one of the following I serve: Caramel Pot de Crème, Salted Caramel & Chocolate Mousse, or Panna Cotta with Balsamic ‘Glaze’. Interspersed with the Olive Oil Cake and I’ve got my repertoire. Pot de crème is not hard, but it is a technique driven recipe.
Pot de crème will need several hours of chilling time. I make mine the day before. It is also best to use the freshest eggs and cream as possible and a really fine granulated sugar for the caramel.
To make silky-smooth custard, strain the custard mixture through a fine sieve before pouring it into the ramekins.
6 large egg yolks
¼ cup water
1 cup milk
2 cups heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Place the egg yolks in a large mixing bowl and lightly whisk them.
Making the caramel and cream: In a heavy pot large enough to hold the milk and cream, dissolve the sugar in the water over low heat. Increase the heat to high and cook the sugar until it is a golden amber color.
While the sugar is dissolving, in another heavy bottom pot, scald the milk and cream over medium high heat.
As soon as the sugar becomes that golden amber color, turn off the heat, and slowly pour the hot cream and milk into the caramel. Note: adding the cream to the caramel will make the mixture bubble – it is dangerously hot. What I do – I add the cream mixture by the ladle full and using a long handled whisk, combine the mixture as I add the milk.
Slowly whisk the caramel cream into the egg yolks. Strain the mixture and allow it to cool (refrigeration is fine).
Pour the custard into the ramekins and place the ramekins into a baking pan. Fill the baking pan 1/3 to 1/2 full with hot water. Cover the pan with aluminum foil.
Bake the pot de crème for about 50 minutes. When gently shaken, they should be set around the edges yet have an area in the middle, about the size of a quarter, that will not be firm.
Refrigerate the pots de crème for several hours or overnight.
Optional: 1) Before serving, you can sprinkle with a little bit of flaked salt like Maldon. 2) You can also add a little bit of whipped cream on top and shaved chocolate