In this classic restaurant dessert, a burnt-sugar crust tops creamy vanilla custard. Tap it with a spoon to hear the satisfying snap of cracked caramel.
These custards are 100% gluten free.
BAKING TOOL HACKS
No ramekins? Any oven-safe coffee or tea cups will work. You can even make one large dessert instead of 4 small ones by using a ceramic or Pyrex pie dish. If you are broiling instead of torching, make sure the material can withstand 500°F in the oven.
ALL ABOUT BROILERS
Some broilers are located above oven racks and below stovetop burners and activate a fiery strip. Other ovens situate their broiler in a drawer below the oven. If your broiler is up top, position a rack as close as possible to the flame (about 4 inches) by sliding it into the highest available slot. Conversely, if your broiler is in the drawer at the bottom of the oven, you may not have a rack to adjust. The heat source will still be about 4 inches away.
To maximize the vanilla flavor, we made our own vanilla sugar for this kit. We infused sugar with Madagascar vanilla beans to deepen the flavor of your desserts!
Wow, you’ve got some beautiful ingredients! Once you’ve unpacked your Red Velvet kit, preheat oven to 325°F. Remove 5 eggs from your refrigerator. In two medium bowls, separate the eggs into yolks and whites. Set aside the yolks for the custard, and save the egg whites for another use. (Make an omelette!) Set out four 6-ounce ramekins.
Using a paring knife, slice the vanilla bean lengthwise down the center, and scrape out the seeds. In a medium saucepan, heat heavy cream, salt, vanilla bean, and seeds, over low heat until the cream is hot, but not boiling. In the medium bowl with egg yolks, add the sugar. Whisk together for a couple of minutes until the yolks turn a slightly pale yellow.
Remove the heavy cream from the heat and discard the vanilla bean. Using a measuring cup, slowly pour some of the hot cream into the yolk-sugar mixture, whisking as you pour to temper (cool down) the hot cream. Continue to do this until the custard is fully incorporated.
Pour the custard into the ramekins. Transfer them to a deep baking dish. Fill the baking dish with an inch of hot water. Carefully place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. The custard is finished baking not when it is completely set, but when the custard jiggles if you tap the edge of the ramekin with a spoon. If the custard ripples from the center, like water in a pond, then it needs more time.
Remove the custards from the oven and take each ramekin out of the hot water using tongs, being careful not to drip water on the others. Cool them at room temperature for about 20 minutes, then place in the refrigerator to chill and set for at least 2 hours or overnight. When ready to finish, remove custards from the fridge and sprinkle the top of each with a teaspoon of vanilla sugar, evenly coating the surface.
Using a torch: Turn on a cooking torch to the highest setting. Make slow circular motions over the custard to get an even caramelization and hard shell. This will take a few minutes, but continue to move the flame around until the top is golden brown. Using an oven broiler: Position a rack as close to the broiler as possible (if necessary), 4 to 6 inches away from the broiler and preheat on high for 10 minutes. Broil for 5 to 10 minutes, only rotating if necessary for an even caramelization. Remove carefully, let cool for a few minutes, then serve and enjoy the satisfying crack!