When we’re surrounded by cold and snow it’s easy to feel like spring is out of reach, and something a little floral and fragrant can be a sweet reminder that it’s on its way. Of course these are absolutely perfect for Valentine’s Day!
Tips for success: First, don’t overcook your crème brulee. When you jiggle the ramekins, the custard should just barely wobble in the middle. You don’t want it to be totally set. If the custard cooks too long your result will be more firm, instead of creamy and smooth. Second, before using the rosewater, smell it in the bottle. If it smells good to you in the bottle, it will smell lovely in your baking as well. Weak-smelling rosewater won’t improve with baking. Trust me, this matters! I’ve had the best luck with rosewater that is made in Lebanon. They know their rosewater, so check the label to see where it was made…it will make it that much more likely to carry the fragrance you expect. Rose Crème Brulee Makes enough for approximately 6 – dependant on the ramekin size. Heat your oven to 300 degrees. In a medium saucepan, whisk together and bring to a boil over medium-high heat: •2 cups of heavy cream •4 generous tablespoons of granulated sugar •Pinch of coarse salt Into a medium-sized bowl, whisk together until they have slightly lightened in color: •6 egg yolks Still whisking the egg yolks, pour just a bit of the warm cream and sugar into the eggs. Continue to do this a bit at a time, always whisking. This is called tempering, and it will prevent you from having scrambled eggs instead of a custard base. Now stir in: •½ tsp. vanilla extract •¾ tsp – 1 tsp. rosewater (choose the amount dependant on how prominent you want the rose to be) Strain your custard base in a container with a spout. Set your ramekins onto a rimmed baking sheet, and pour your custard in. Set the whole pan into your pre-heated oven, and fill the pan with water until it reaches about half way up the side of the ramekins. Check the custard after 30 minutes by gently jiggling the ramekins, again, they should wobble only in the middle a little, if not they will need more time. Let them chill completely before you’re ready to serve. Sprinkle the tops with granulated sugar, shaking off the excess. Using a torch, heat the sugar until lightly carmelized, moving the torch with quick back-and-forth or circular movements. Repeat with another layer of sugar, and then place the crème brulee back in the fridge for about 10 minutes to chill and solidify the sugar crust. Crack into those lovelies and enjoy! Happy Valentine’s Day to you and all those near and dear to your heart!