16 ounces Heavy Cream
1 pinch Salt
4 Egg Yolks
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Orange Zest
3 tablespoons Granulated Sugar
2 tablespoons Crystallized Ginger chopped very fine
This ever popular, rich baked custard is chilled and finished with a topping of caramelized sugar (hence, the literal translation).
Pre heat oven to 325 degrees. Split vanilla bean down the center and scrape out seeds. Combine cream, vanilla bean seeds and salt in a saucepan over low heat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove mixture from heat, add orange zest and set aside. In a mixing bowl, place the egg yolks and sugar. Whisk by hand until completely combined, then slowly pour in the warm cream mixture and mix thoroughly. Place 4 ramekins in a large baking dish.
Pour mixture into ramekins and fill about ¾ full. Bake in a water bath (so water is about 2/3 up the side of ramekins) for about 1 hour or until set. Transfer crème brulees to work surface, allow to cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight. Combine the 3 tablespoons of sugar and crystallized ginger.
Spread evenly over top of each custard. Place under broiler until sugar caramelizes (melts, bubbles and turns a golden brown). Serve immediately or allow to cool under refrigeration. Best if served within 8 hours of re-refrigeration.
Option for Caramelizing Sugar
Use a small propane torch. Hold flame a few inches away and move about over surface of ramekins.